Algeria in turmoil following Boute ika’s ousting
There is concern among Algerians and potential investors that the head of the country’s powerful army, Lt Gen Ahmed Gaïd Salah, could bene t from a political vacuum at the top in the wake of the resignation of 20-year president Abdelaziz Boute ika. The decision to appoint a stalwart member of the regime as the new president in April 2019 has angered protestors whose months’ long civil unrest saw the end of his 30-year rule. The appointment of Abdelkader Bensalah, the speaker of the upper house, as interim president follows constitutional rules but goes against the demands of demonstrators, who are pushing for him and other veteran politicians to stand down. In April 2019, for the rst time in seven weeks, police in the capital red teargas to try to disperse protesters, who were also hit with water cannon. The protest movement is calling for a new transitional framework that pledges to carry out meaningful reforms and hold free elections. Although Boute ika’s resig- nation in April 2019 was celebrated by demonstrators, they have remained rm in pushing for a wider overhaul of the political system. The resignation of the 82-year-old Boute ika came after weeks of peaceful, unprecedented mass protests against his plans to run for a fth term as presi- dent after two decades in power. But the in rm leader — who had rarely been seen in public since su ering a stroke in 2014 appeared looking in rm when handing over his resignation letter — had long been seen as absent while an authoritarian group known as Le Pouvoir (The Power) contin- ued to rule.