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In Algeria, the chief of staff of the army wants to impose a presidential before the end of the year


Ahmed Gaïd Salah advocates a simple grooming of the electoral code.

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Demonstration, in Algiers, August 30, 2019, marking the six months of the dispute in the country. RYAD KRAMDI / AFP

Ahmed Gaid Salah, chief of staff of the army, and de facto leader of Algeria, opted for no charge by announcing Monday, September 2 that the Algerians would return to the polls before the end of the year. Deprived of president since April, the country is sinking into political and economic instability. "It is appropriate to convene the electorate on September 15 and that the elections can be held within the deadlines set by law," suggested the boss of the army during a visit inspection of military units in the southeast of the country.

The electoral law provides that the "electorate [shall] be convened by presidential decree ninety days before the presidential election" . If it is actually called on September 15, the election could be held mid-December.

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The statement of the head of the army, the holder of real power since the ouster in April of former head of state Abdelaziz Bouteflika, sounds like an order that should quickly be translated into action by the interim president and former president of the Senate Abdelkader Bensalah. It is constitutionally his prerogative to call an election, in the name of a roadmap he had promised "consensual" at the beginning of the summer. The announcement was expected late this month after the dialogue and mediation forum headed by former Speaker of the National Assembly Karim Younes delivered a report on the details of the polls. after consultation with political forces and civil society.

Hostility of the street

While struggling to find interlocutors after failing to convince the authorities to implement appeasement measures, such as the release of detainees arrested during the demonstrations, the mediation "panel" soon found itself confronted with the hostility of the street and the mistrust of some of the opposition. It also seems to have failed to respond to the regime's desire to organize a presidential election as soon as possible, while the mobilization of the street, which continued throughout the summer, promises to be more important for the start of the school year. Of all the demands expressed by the opposition, only that of a departure from the government of Noureddine Bedoui, appointed by former President Abdelaziz Bouteflika a few days before his resignation in April, seems retained.

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Karim Younes also announced Monday that his panel will present in the next two days two proposals for the revision of the electoral law and the creation of a high authority responsible for the preparation, organization and monitoring of the election, reports the official agency APS.

Source: lemonde

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