Ahmed Ben Bella (1916-2012) was the first president of Algeria, serving from 1960 to 1963. During his presidency, Algeria gained independence from France after a seven-year struggle known as the Algerian war.
He led the armed conflict through the FLN, the national liberation front, which was the main nationalist movement during the war.
The sole legal and ruling political party of the Algerian state until other parties were legalized in 1989.
Ben Bella’s main tasks during his term were to organize the shipment of foreign weapons and coordinate the political strategy of the party.
When Algeria gained independence in 1960, he worked on strengthening relations with other colonies and former colonies, and made Algeria join the Non-Aligned Movement.
He forged links with African leaders such as Gamal Abdel Nasser, Kwame Nkrumah, Modibo Keita, and Sekou Touré. Ahmed Ben Bella was deposed three years after Algeria gained independence and was replaced by Boumediene.