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Currently I have a website with multiple domains, each domain for a specific language. However, I also have sub folders with each language. For example:

www.en_example.com/en
www.en_example.com/fr
www.fr_example.com/en
www.fr_example.com/fr

And of course the www.en_example.com/fr domain is the same content as www.fr_example.com/fr

The meta tags in the english site

<link rel='alternate' href='https://www.en_example.ca/en' hreflang='en' />
<link rel='alternate' href='https://www.en_example.ca/en' hreflang='en-ca' />
<link rel='alternate' href='https://www.fr_example.ca/fr' hreflang='fr' />
<link rel='alternate' href='https://www.fr_example.ca/fr' hreflang='fr-ca' />
<link rel='alternate' href='https://www.en_example.ca/en' hreflang='x-default' />
<link rel='canonical' href='https://www.en_example.ca/en' />

The meta tags in the french site

<link rel='alternate' href='https://www.en_example.ca/en' hreflang='en' />
<link rel='alternate' href='https://www.en_example.ca/en' hreflang='en-ca' />
<link rel='alternate' href='https://www.fr_example.ca/fr' hreflang='fr' />
<link rel='alternate' href='https://www.fr_example.ca/fr' hreflang='fr-ca' />
<link rel='alternate' href='https://www.en_example.ca/en' hreflang='x-default' />
<link rel='canonical' href='https://www.fr_example.ca/fr' />

When I test the URLs in the SEO tool, the domain language URL with the same locale to the domain, it works. But when I change the locale it fails. Example:

Testing FR:
https://www.fr_example.ca/fr -> It works
https://www.fr_example.ca/en -> Returns error: "Missing return link" & "Non-self-referencing canonical URL in HTML"

Testing EN:
https://www.en_example.ca/en-> It works
https://www.en_example.ca/fr -> Returns error: "Missing return link" & "Non-self-referencing canonical URL in HTML"

I tried adding the URLs to the language but it complains that there are duplicate tags with the same language.

Any ideas/suggestions? Am I missing some tags or am I doing it wrong?

Thanks!

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I don't see anything wrong with Hreflang annotation, it could be the tools that is causing an issue, however, I never used this tool. Its worth to test is GSC to see if it does return any issues.

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