Algeria’s president Abdelaziz Bouteflika succumbs to people power resigns after mass protests

The 82 year old Algeria’s President Abdelaziz Bouteflika has succumbed to calls for him to resign. This comes after weeks of mass protests, from enraged Algerians who took to the streets to protest calling for him to step down.

Mr Bouteflika, who has been in power for 20 years, had already dropped plans to seek a fifth term as opposition to his rule grew.

The powerful Algerian army had called for Bouteflika to be declared incapable of carrying out his duties.

The ailing leader suffered a stroke six years ago and has rarely appeared in public since.

Thousands took to the streets of the capital, Algiers, to celebrate the announcement. People waved Algeria’s national flags and sang.News of the resignation came in a statement carried on state news agency APS.

“The president of the republic, Abdelaziz Bouteflika, has officially notified the president of the constitutional council of his decision to end his mandate as president of the republic,” it said.

State TV then reported that this would be with immediate effect.
According to the constitution, the Senate speaker should take over as interim head of state until fresh elections are held.

Mr Bouteflika, came to power in 1999 and strengthened his grip after a bloody civil war against Islamist insurgents which left 150,000 dead.

The chairman of the upper house of parliament, Abdelkader Bensalah, is expected to become caretaker president for three months until elections.

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