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Vol 59 No 1

Published 12th January 2018


Algeria

Cold war and glacial change

Hostility to Morocco will persist and the political system will stay frozen, as the Western Sahara issue languishes

Speculation around the scheduled 2019 presidential election says much about the snail's pace at which Algeria's political class moves. Front de libération nationale (FLN) loyalists are arguing for President Abdelaziz Bouteflika's re-election even though he has been enfeebled since a stroke in 2013. 'Boutef' is sentient but still largely confined to his residence in Zeralda, and FLN Secretary General Djamel Ould Abbes told ruling party members in Souk Ahras on 30 December that the President was 'on his way to remission'. Sceptics think this overstated, although Bouteflika was seen to use both hands when signing the Finance Act 2018 on 27 December.

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