Algeria parties agree on Bouteflika’s political future

Political parties in Algeria have reached a consensus regarding whether or not ailing President Abdelaziz Bouteflika should be allowed to serve a fifth term, the leader of the Algeria Hope Alliance has revealed.

Ammar Ghoul said the parties had agreed on whether Bouteflika should stand as a candidate in the next presidential elections slated for 2019 and a political initiative would soon be launched in this regard.

Opposition parties said the pro-government Ghoul had refused to discuss alternative and appointing a successor to Bouteflika who had widespread public support.

Algeria’s National Liberation Front (FLN) governing party is urging 81-year-old Bouteflika to seek a fifth term in next year’s presidential election despite his frail health and growing doubts about his ability to lead the oil-and-gas-rich country, the largest in Africa.

Read: Algerian public figures call on Bouteflika not to run for fifth term

Bouteflika was debilitated by a stroke five years ago.

Earlier this week, Israeli media and academic researcher at the Begin-Sadat Centre for Strategic Studies, Eddie Cohen, quoting European sources, claimed Bouteflika was in a state of “clinical death”, and pointed out that medical teams from Switzerland and France are working to save him.

He said there was “a state of alert in the army amid blackout” of information.