A July election has been postponed, and now there is a new date: Algeria is due to elect a successor to longtime President Abdelaziz Bouteflika on 12 December. This was announced by interim President Abdelkader Bensalah on a Sunday evening televised speech.
Bouteflika ruled Algeria for 20 years. Continuing mass protests with hundreds of thousands of people on the streets have lost their support within the powerful Algerian military. Bouteflika finally resigned in April, but protests against the country's leadership have continued since then. Especially on Fridays there are regular demonstrations in the capital Algiers and other cities. According to local media reports, 22 demonstrators were arrested last Friday during demonstrations.
Analysis of the situation in Algeria
The election of the head of state, initially scheduled for July, had been postponed indefinitely because the constitutional council had not accepted the only two candidates. This had caused fears among opposition parties and demonstrators that the military could exploit the situation.