After purging the military, Bouteflika’s clan is believed to have gained extensive control over the deep state, although it remains unclear who spearheaded the campaign, the president himself or Gaïd Salah, who has extended his power base in recent years. Although the regime’s internal power struggle seems to have calmed down for now, the tug of war over Bouteflika’s succession is ongoing.
Results for Category: Algeria
Bouteflika’s fourth term ends in 2019. It seems likely that Algeria’s political future will remain in a flux until – or perhaps beyond – then. As if to underscore that point, FLN chief Djmel Ould Abbes last October 2016 floated the spectre that Bouteflika may even run for another term “if he wishes.”
Human rights violations fall into five main areas: freedom of association, peaceful assembly and protest, freedom of speech, women’s rights, minority rights and accountability for past crimes. In sum, human rights in Algeria are frequently violated and the government seems deaf to the repeated calls to remedy the situation.
Rachid Nekkaz, algerian businessman, activist and former presidential candidate, is one of the few opposition leaders who currently enjoy popularity among young voters. His unconventional initiatives have not only positioned him as a man of the people, they have also increased his understanding of Algerian society, countering frequent criticisms that he is a rich, out-of-touch foreigner. However, many doubted his intentions, given his lack of success in French politics, and accused him of being out of touch with the realities of ordinary Algerians.
As president, Bouteflika focused on rebuilding the country and strengthening Algeria’s international reputation. Domestically, Bouteflika worked on distancing the military, namely the security services, from the political arena. This created a power struggle that continues to define Algerian politics.
Algerian president Abdelaziz Bouteflika promised multilevel reforms in order to calm angry youth protesting high prices for basic commodities. He promised to undertake deep constitutional reforms meant to restore a more free and inclusive society and a democratic state. In a country where politics are complex to begin with, this promise proved to be tough and tedious to keep, but Algerians did see the formal fulfilment of the promise.
What is certain is that Bouteflika won this political round. The ailing leader who can barely talk and walk was able to remove his old ally and recent enemy. He won because of the support of the military, which is now the other major player alongside the presidency. Have the country’s problems ended there? On the contrary, this is perhaps only the beginning.