Asharq Al-awsat English Middle-east and International News and Opinion from Asharq Al-awsat Newspaper

MSP Head Blasts Attempts to Remove Algeria’s Army Chief From Power

MSP Head Blasts Attempts to Remove Algeria’s Army Chief From Power

Monday, 13 May, 2019 - 09:15
Police officers try to disperse people trying to reach the government palace during a protest against President Abdelaziz Bouteflika's plan to extend his 20-year rule by seeking a fifth term in April elections in Algiers, Algeria, March 1, 2019. REUTERS/Zohra Bensemra

President of Algeria’s Movement for the Society of Peace (MSP) Abderrazak Makri blasted the country’s extremist seculars who are vying for full control over the country’s military command.

Makri said that a group of secular elitists was working to remove Army Chief Ahmed Gaid Salah from power for his Arab nationalist orientation.

On 26 March 2019, following anti-regime protests, Salah called for President Bouteflika to be declared unfit for office, a move which succeeded in removing him from power.

Speaking at an MSP-endorsed Ramadan dinner, Makri said: “The movement (MSP) has long fought against Bouteflika’s reign and regime stalwarts who took over governing when the former was ill. We fought against the mafia-run economy they oversaw and for a true democratic transition.”

Lauding popular will for marching onwards with the country and away from internal corruption, Makri said three goals have been set in motion, one of which already achieved.

“The first goal, he said, was to stop Bouteflika from ruling for a fifth mandate,” Makri said, adding that “the second step is to bring down the band running a mafia economy in Algeria.”

On the fight against institutional corruption, Algerian police have arrested Said Bouteflika, the youngest brother of the former president, and two former intelligence chiefs, Generals Bachir Athmane Tartag and Mohamed Mediene. Those three were believed to be responsible for the country’s decision-making process during the time Bouteflika was too sick to rule.

Algeria’s corrupt but wealthy top brass are believed to have made insane fortunes off being close to the ruling Bouteflika family.

As for the third goal, which is yet to be achieved, Makri said: “It is a true democratic transition.”

“Innocent ordinary civilians who walk in protests without a political ax to grind will achieve this goal,” he stressed.

Editor Picks