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Algeria’s President Bouteflika Resigns After Protests, Military Pressure

Tuesday 2 April 2019
Algeria’s President Bouteflika Resigns After Protests, Military Pressure

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Algerian Army Wants Bouteflika Declared Unfit to Rule

Alwaght- Algerian President Abdelaziz Bouteflika has officially notified the president of the country's Constitutional Council about the decision to end up his presidential term.

Last week, Algerian Army Chief of Staff Ahmed Gaid Salah said in a televised address that Bouteflika should be declared unable to govern under Article 102 of the country's constitution.

Article 102 suggests that a president suffering from a serious long-term illness is unable to fulfill his responsibilities, so, in this case, the Constitutional Council, after verification, can ask the parliament to consider vacating the presidency.

The resignation comes amid nationwide rallies as people went out on the streets to protest against Bouteflika's intention to run for the fifth term in the upcoming presidential election. Reacting on the protests, Bouteflika said that he would not run for a new term and postponed the election, but a new date has not been set yet.

On Monday, Bouteflika, who is 82 and in poor health, had previously said he would quit before the end of his term on April 28.

Most of the protesters have been young Algerians under the age of 30, hit hardest by the lack of economic reforms and a high rate of unemployment.

Under the constitution, after Bouteflika's resignation the presidency will be declared vacant and the speaker of Algeria’s upper house of parliament, would act as interim leader for up to 90 days. The current speaker is 77-year-old Abdelkader Bensalah. If for some reason, the speaker's seat is empty, the president of the Constitutional Council assumes office, equally for 90 days. Tayeb Belaiz, who is 70 years old, is the leader of the Council.

During this period of 90 days, a presidential election must be organized, but the interim president does not have the right to contest the elections. Pending the outcome of the vote, no reshuffle or resignation of the government in place can be accepted.

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Algeria President Bouteflika Resigns Protests Military Pressure

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