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After massive protests, Algeria’s leader won’t run again

By Sudarsan Raghavan | Washington Post
TUNIS, Tunisia – Algerian President Abdelaziz Bouteflika has delayed next month’s elections and will not seek a fifth term in office, a stunning turnaround that arrived after weeks of massive street protests in the North African nation.
The decision, announced by the country’s official news agency, came a day after the ailing Bouteflika returned to the capital Algiers from Switzerland, where he had been receiving medical treatment for the past two weeks.


The elections, scheduled for April 18, will be postponed until a new interim leadership is established and can plan for a new vote, the news agency reported citing Algerian authorities.
The original decision by Bouteflika to run for a fifth term propelled tens of thousands of Algerians to the streets demanding he rescind his decision.
The 82-year-old leader, who is wheel-chair bound, has been rarely seen in public since he suffered a stroke six years ago. He has led the country, a major oil and gas producer, for two decades.

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