Algerian President resigns after mass protests

President Abdelaziz Bouteflika has ultimately resigned with immediate effect bowing down to the massive street protests against his tenure of 20 years. Bouteflika had announced that he will step down within hours of the announcement by the army chief that he will act to remove him from power.

In a letter addressed to the Constitutional Council, Bouteflika announced that he is stepping down with an intention to contribute to the calming the souls and minds of his citizens and that they can collectively take Algeria to the better future they aspire to. He also mentioned in the letter that, “I have made this decision to avoid and prevent the arguments which distort, unfortunately, the current situation, and avoid its turning into serious skirmishes, to ensure the protection of persons and property”.

The announcement gave way to celebrations in the Algerian capital, Algiers as hundreds of people burst into joy as they sang songs and waved flags in front of the Central Post Office. Algerian had seen massive protests to seek the resignation of the President and his ruling elite. The protests had actually broken open in the month of February after President Bouteflika had announced that he will seek another term in office in the upcoming elections scheduled to be held in April. Later, he stated that he will not seek another term but got the elections postponed indefinitely on the pretext that he will continue in office till the next person is elected and will ensure that the elections are held in this year itself.

The latter announcement further fanned the public anger and once again people took to streets to protest against the ailing President who had not shown many public appearances ever since he had suffered a stroke in 2013. The capital Algiers saw many hundreds to thousands of people taking to streets calling for the resignation of the President.

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