Middle East

Algeria's ex-president Abdelaziz Bouteflika dies aged 84

February 9, 2019 Supporters of Algeria's National Liberation Front (FLN) party, gather at La Coupole arena in the capital Algiers to call upon the current President Abdelaziz Bouteflika (poster) to run for a fifth term in office (Photo by RYAD KRAMDI / AFP)

ALGIERS: Algeria's former president Abdelaziz Bouteflika, who resigned in 2019 amid huge protests against his rule, died Friday aged 84, public television announced.

The former strongman left office in April 2019 under pressure from the military after weeks of demonstrations over his bid to run for a fifth term in office.

After his resignation, he had stayed out of the public eye at a residence in western Algiers.

Bouteflika became president of Algeria in 1999, as it emerged from a decade of civil war, and was elected again in 2004, 2009 and 2014.

But his bid in 2019 for a fifth term, despite his age and ill health, sparked angry protests that soon grew into a mass movement against his regime.

When he lost the backing of the army, he was forced to step down.

The Hirak mass protests continued into the rule of Bouteflika's successor Abdelmadjid Tebboune, also seen as a regime insider, but the movement was suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic.

 

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