Algerian President Sacks Transport Minister Over 'Grave Misconduct'

Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune. (Reuters)
Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune. (Reuters)
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Algerian President Sacks Transport Minister Over 'Grave Misconduct'

Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune. (Reuters)
Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune. (Reuters)

Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune dismissed the minister of transport for "grave misconduct" in exercising his duties. No further details were provided.

Reasons for such moves are rarely publicized in Algeria, and he is the second transport minister to be sacked since the president took office in December 2019.

"Today, the President of the Republic Abdelmadjid Tebboune terminated the duties of the Minister of Transport, Aissa Bekkai, for committing a grave error in the exercise of his duties," the Algerian presidency announced.

Bekkai, 57, had held the position since July 2021. He previously served as deputy minister in charge of foreign trade in the first government of Tebboune's presidency that was appointed in January 2020.

Minister of Public Works Kamal Nasri was assigned as his acting replacement.

Bekkai's dismissal comes after the Ministry of Transport announced the operation of more than 100 additional international flights for the national airline, Air Algérie, starting March 15. Flights had been reduced to a minimum as part of coronavirus-related restrictions.

Lazhar Hani was sacked as transport minister in January 2021, along with the CEO of the state-owned airline Air Algerie for "importing banned goods" in violation of orders to prioritize local production and reduce imports.

The supplies were related to the catering activity onboard, when the airline was shut due to the pandemic and faced financial difficulties.



Hamas’ Armed Wing Says Israeli Airstrike Killed Two Hostages in Rafah

12 June 2024, Palestinian Territories, Khan Younis: Tents for displaced Palestinians at al-Mawasi area in the southern Gaza Strip city of Khan Younis. (Omar Ashtawy/APA Images via ZUMA Press Wire/dpa)
12 June 2024, Palestinian Territories, Khan Younis: Tents for displaced Palestinians at al-Mawasi area in the southern Gaza Strip city of Khan Younis. (Omar Ashtawy/APA Images via ZUMA Press Wire/dpa)
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Hamas’ Armed Wing Says Israeli Airstrike Killed Two Hostages in Rafah

12 June 2024, Palestinian Territories, Khan Younis: Tents for displaced Palestinians at al-Mawasi area in the southern Gaza Strip city of Khan Younis. (Omar Ashtawy/APA Images via ZUMA Press Wire/dpa)
12 June 2024, Palestinian Territories, Khan Younis: Tents for displaced Palestinians at al-Mawasi area in the southern Gaza Strip city of Khan Younis. (Omar Ashtawy/APA Images via ZUMA Press Wire/dpa)

Hamas' armed wing al-Qassam Brigades said on Friday that two Israeli hostages held in Gaza were killed in an Israeli airstrike on Rafah a few days ago.

The group, in a video posted on its Telegram channel, did not release the names of those said to have been killed or provide any evidence.

The Israeli government "does not want your hostages to return, except in coffins," the al-Qassam Brigades statement said.

Israel rescued four hostages held by Hamas in a hostage-freeing operation in central Gaza's al-Nuseirat on June 8. The health ministry in Hamas-run Gaza said more than 250 Palestinians were killed in the raid.

The war in Gaza erupted when Hamas fighters stormed southern Israel on Oct. 7, killing around 1,200 people and seizing more than 250 hostages, according to Israeli tallies.

Israel has responded with a military assault on the Gaza Strip that has killed more than 37,000 Palestinians, according to the Gaza health ministry. Israel says its campaign is intended to eliminate Hamas as a threat and free the remaining hostages.