News / Africa

Algerian Cabinet Moves Prompt Election Speculation

A photo released by the Algerian Press Service) on June 13, 2013 shows Algeria's President Abdelaziz Bouteflika (R) receiving Algerian Chief of Staff Ahmed Gaid Salah in a military hospital, in Paris, France. A photo released by the Algerian Press Service) on June 13, 2013 shows Algeria's President Abdelaziz Bouteflika (R) receiving Algerian Chief of Staff Ahmed Gaid Salah in a military hospital, in Paris, France.
x
A photo released by the Algerian Press Service) on June 13, 2013 shows Algeria's President Abdelaziz Bouteflika (R) receiving Algerian Chief of Staff Ahmed Gaid Salah in a military hospital, in Paris, France.
A photo released by the Algerian Press Service) on June 13, 2013 shows Algeria's President Abdelaziz Bouteflika (R) receiving Algerian Chief of Staff Ahmed Gaid Salah in a military hospital, in Paris, France.
Reuters
— Algeria's President Abdelaziz Bouteflika on Wednesday named new ministers for foreign affairs, the interior and justice in what appeared to be major resumption of political activity since Bouteflika suffered a stroke in April.
 
The cabinet changes were likely made, observers and analysts said, to strengthen Bouteflika's allies before presidential elections in April 2014 when many expect the convalescing leader will not run again.
 
The North African oil and gas producer also named a new vice defense minister, the state APS news agency reported, but kept Prime Minister Abdelmalek Sellal, a key Bouteflika supporter during his absence, according to analysts.
 
There was also no change at the top of the finance and energy ministries.
 
Bouteflika, 76, returned to Algeria in July after being treated at a French hospital. State media have since released pictures of him meeting officials and said he was recuperating.
 
Re-elected for a third term in 2009, Bouteflika has not said whether he will run again after ruling the country for more than a decade. But his illness prompted speculation about a possible transition before the election next year.
 
“This would seem to suggest that the cabinet shuffle was the public manifestation of behind-the-scenes negotiations between Bouteflika and other groups that are looking to gain political influence in the run-up to the 2014 election,” said Geoff Porter, director of North Africa Risk Consulting.
 
APS quoted a presidential statement naming Ramtane Lamamra, an African Union official, as foreign minister, and Tayeb Belaiz as interior minister.
 
Algeria has been run with Soviet-style secrecy for decades by an elite drawn largely from men who fought for independence against France from 1954 to 1962. Bouteflika, who first became president in 1999, is among the last of that generation.
 
Algeria's oil and gas sector, the main revenue source for the government budget, is also experiencing difficulties with declining output.
 
That situation was worsened after an attack earlier this year by Islamist fighters on the In Amenas gas plant, jointly owned by BP, Norway's Statoil and Algeria's Sonatrach.

You May Like

Reports of Mass Murder on Mediterranean Smuggler’s Boat

Boat sailed from Libya with 750 migrants aboard and arrived in Italy with 569 More

Video New Thailand Hotline Targets Misbehaving Monks

Officials say move aims to restore country’s image of Buddhism, tarnished by recent high profile scandals such as opulent lifestyle, drug and alcohol abuse, as well as child sex abuse More

Study: Dust from Sahara Helped Form Bahama Islands

What does the Sahara have in common with a Caribbean island? Quite a lot, researchers say More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Astronauts Train in Underwater Labi
X
George Putic
July 25, 2014 7:25 PM
In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Astronauts Train in Underwater Lab

In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Not Even Monks Spared From Thailand’s Junta-Backed Morality Push

With Thailand’s military government firmly in control after May’s bloodless coup, authorities are carrying out plans they say are aimed at restoring discipline, morality and patriotism to all Thais. The measures include a crackdown on illegal gambling, education reforms to promote students’ moral development, and a new 24-hour phone hotline for citizens to report misbehaving monks. Steve Sandford reports from Bangkok.
Video

Video Virtual Program Teaches Farming Skills

In a fast-changing world beset by unpredictable climate conditions, farmers cannot afford to ignore new technology. Researchers in Australia are developing an online virtual world program to share information about climate change and more sustainable farming techniques for sugar cane growers. As VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports, the idea is to create a wider support network for farmers.
Video

Video Airline Expert: Missile will Show Signature on Debris

The debris field from Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 is spread over a 21-kilometer radius in eastern Ukraine. It is expected to take investigators months to sort through the airplane pieces to learn about the missile that brought down the jetliner and who fired it. VOAs Carolyn Presutti explains how this work will be done.
Video

Video Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debate

In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Airbus Adds Metal 3D Printed Parts to New Jets

By the end of this year, European aircraft manufacturing consortium Airbus plans to deliver the first of its new, extra-wide-body passenger jets, the A350-XWB. Among other technological innovations, the new plane will also incorporate metal parts made in a 3-D printer. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video AIDS Conference Welcomes Exciting Developments in HIV Treatment, Prevention

Significant strides have been made in recent years toward the treatment and prevention of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. This year, at the International AIDS Conference, the AIDS community welcomed progress on a new pill that may prevent transmission of the deadly virus. VOA’s Anita Powell reports from Melbourne, Australia.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.

AppleAndroid