Moqrani Uprising of 1871–72

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Moqrani Uprising of 1871–72


a rebellion of Arab and Kabyle tribes in Algeria against French colonial rule.

The Moqrani (Mokrani) Uprising was provoked by such policies of the French colonial authorities as the seizure of lands belonging to the indigenous population and the dispatch to France of Algerians conscripted into the French Army.

The uprising began in 1871 in the district of Merdjana and was led by the feudal ruler of the district, Si al-Hadj Muhammad Moqrani. Primarily supported by the peasants and nomads, it was joined by the religious brotherhood of Rahmaniya. In April and May, after more than 300 battles, the insurgents took over almost the entire eastern part of Algeria. Moqrani was killed in battle on May 5, and his brother Ahmad Bou Mezraq took his place. As a result of the poor military coordination of the insurgent forces and the transfer of reinforcements from France after the Versaillais quashed the Paris Commune, the rebel’s main forces were routed by July 1871. The Kabyle insurgents, however, continued the struggle. The uprising was finally suppressed in January 1872 after the colonial troops eliminated the last pockets of resistance in Ouargla and Touggourt.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.