1000’s protest Algerian president’s bid for fifth time period

ALGIERS

Thousands of Algerians on Friday took to streets of capital Algiers — and other cities — to protest President Abdel Aziz Bouteflika’s bid to secure a fifth term in office. 

Social-media activists shared videos purportedly showing demonstrations and sit-ins in the Algerian provinces of Annaba, Bejaia and Bouira.

Friday’s demonstrations reportedly included large numbers of women in response to calls for greater female participation in conjunction with International Women’s Day.

High-profile participants in Friday’s protests included Louisa Hanoune, secretary-general of Algeria’s Labor Party; Ali Benflis, a former prime minister; and Abderrazak Makri, head of Algeria’s Movement for Society for Peace.

Last month, Algeria’s ruling National Liberation Front nominated Bouteflika — who has ruled Algeria since 1999 — to run for a fifth term in office.

Opposition figures have repeatedly urged the aging president, who in 2013 was treated for a blood clot in the brain, to refrain from contesting the election.

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