Operation Torch 75th Anniversary Commemorations

8 – 10 November 2017

The British and U.S. Embassies in Algeria will conduct a series of commemorations 8-10 November, to remember all the military and civilian personnel who lost their lives during the Allied landings in North Africa in 1942.  These events were a turning point during the Second World War.

The landings, named Operation Torch, aimed to provide the Allies with a foothold in North Africa, from where they could advance eastwards to Tunisia, setting the scene for further landings in Sicily and eventually Normandy, leading to the defeat of Axis forces in Europe.

Landings in Algeria took place around Oran and Algiers during the initial phase of the operation on 8 November 1942.  The Allies were soon able to secure these key ports and subsequently landed in Bejaïa and Annaba to enable the advance to the east.  Over the course of the operation, hundreds of men lost their lives both on land and at sea.

The week of activities to mark the 75th anniversary of the landings will include commemorative ceremonies in Oran, Algiers, Bejaïa, and Annaba.  In addition, the National Institute of Strategic Global Studies in Algiers (INESG) will host a colloquium with American, British, and Algerian historians related to Operation Torch, entitled “Allied Landings in Algeria, November 8, 1942:  Past and Present Effects.”

For information regarding the commemorative ceremonies, please reach out to Hichem Melaksou at the U.S. Embassy (+213 770 862 609) and Toufik Douib at the British Embassy (+213 770 880 081).  For information regarding the colloquium, please reach out to INESG (+213 21 54 07 07).

Quote from Her Majesty’s Ambassador, Andrew Noble: 

“These commemorations aim to salute the sacrifice of thousands of Algerians who fought against fascism in Europe. Op Torch was the start of UK’s modern day engagement with Algeria and its people and, today, Algeria and the UK enjoy a strong and growing security partnership that keeps the people of both of our countries safe.”

Quote from U.S. Ambassador John P. Desrocher:

“75 years ago, Allied troops and nations joined forces to combat the common foe of fascism.  The landings in Algeria marked the first step that U.S. forces took in the hard but ultimately victorious battle to defeat fascism in Europe.  75 years later, the United States and Algeria are partners in the common fight against international terrorism.  I am confident that our joint efforts will result in victory for global peace and regional stability.”