Monday, May 10, 2021

Algerian Tebboune signs new constitution | Algeria News

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The Algerian leader approves the new charter after a November referendum which saw a record voter turnout.

Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune promulgated the country’s new constitution, his office said on Friday, months after the document was approved in a referendum that saw a record voter turnout.

Tebboune, 75, who only returned to Algeria last week after spending two months in Germany seeking treatment for the coronavirus, has long presented the new charter as responding to the demands of protesters who, in April 2019, forced the departure of his predecessor, Abdelaziz Bouteflika.

But the document received limited support, with less than 15% of the population voting for it in a November vote eclipsed by the novel coronavirus pandemic and following calls for a boycott.

Protesters in the North African country first took to the streets in February 2019 after Bouteflika announced his intention to run for a fifth consecutive term, despite his failing health.

The protests, however, continued long after Bouteflika left with members of the movement, known as Hirak, demanding a complete overhaul of the political system.

The new constitution has been touted as responding to Hirak’s demands, but maintains the Algerian presidential regime and extends the powers of the army, a central pillar of the state.

Tebboune also approved Algeria’s 2021 budget on Thursday and hopes to launch a vaccination campaign against the new coronavirus, using the Sputnik V vaccine produced by its Russian ally as early as this month.



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