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Vol 52 No 3

Published 4th February 2011

Playing dominoes

The autocratic regimes in Algeria and Libya are making concessions in the hope of resisting the democracy movement that started in Tunisia

For now, Algiers is what locals call 'normal', a condition in which roadblocks and tight security prevail, mixed with spiralling living costs, massive overcrowding and poor public services. Algerians may wish to redefine 'normal' after recent events in neighbouring Tunisia and their old rival, Egypt. Like their North African neighbours, a majority of Algerians are alienated from their government and angry about high prices and unemployment. So far, the hogra (contempt) that Algerians feel for their rulers has stopped short of revolution because they are still traumatised by the bloody conflict of the 1990s between the state and Islamists (AC Vol 40 No 24).

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