A film by Herve Bourges; directed by Jerome Sesquin

Algeria was under French colonial rule for 132 years. From tears of joy at independence in 1962 to the tragic civil war of the 1990s and the anger that culminated in the Arab Spring, this series provides a unique insight into a country notoriously inaccessible to both journalists and filmmakers.

Interviews with key players like Ben Bella, Ait Ahmed and President Abdelaziz Bouteflika, cover 50 years of tragic and powerful history from the Evian Accords of 1962 to the Arab Spring of 2011.

This is the story of Algeria's past, present and future.

In 1962, Algeria proclaimed independence from France following eight years of war and over a century of colonial rule.

We liberated the territory, but not the people.

Abdennour Ali Yahia, a human rights lawyer

The Algerian war of independence, and the negotiations that followed, spurred decades of political assassinations, coups, terrorist attacks and civil war.

Hundreds of thousands of Europeans fled the country, but many Algerians who fought alongside the French during the war were left behind.

Harkis, as they were called, faced torture and execution at the hands of fellow Algerians.

Under the rule of its first elected president, Ahmed Ben Bella, Algeria adopted a socialist single-party political system.

One year after independence, the country of nine million was poor, starving and war-torn.

This is the story of Algeria's struggle told through the voices of the presidents and politicians who once ran the country.