Algerian Army Chief of Staff Ahmed Gaid Salah affirmed that the presidential elections will take place on December 12 as scheduled, and reiterated his rejection for releasing individuals who were detained for carrying the Amazigh flag.
"All guarantees related to the elections have been provided and everything is fine," said the army chief, adding that conditions are favorable for elections to be held on time.
The Army Chief asserted at the headquarters of the Air Defense Command in Algiers that the elections will be held as scheduled because this is what the people want, except the “gang”, in reference to figures of the regime of former President Abdelaziz Bouteflika, most of whom are currently in prison.
Salah, who is the de facto ruler in the country, was responding to the protesters who called last Friday for changing the date of the election.
In his speech published by the Ministry of Defense, Salah said that Algerian youth, “have reached a high degree of awareness and are determined to go to the presidential elections.”
The whole Algerian people, except for the “gangs”, realized that all the conditions are ready for electing a new president, who will implement a program suitable to build a new Algeria, where there is no place for illegal and obsolete practices.
Army Chief stressed that the army was committed to protecting the people until the end of the sensitive stage of presidential elections.
He pointed out that the youth will not respond to the propaganda led by the enemies aiming to obstruct the course of the elections, asserting that they will not back down especially after all they have achieved in this short period.
The army chief responded to human rights activists demanding the release of 20 protesters who had been imprisoned for raising the Amazigh flag.
In his speech, Salah noted that what they did is considered an insult to the “national flag” which is a symbol of national sovereignty and their demands are rejected, adding that the judicial system is handling their case without any pressures or dictations.