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

Karzai's Legacy: Missed Opportunities?

Afghanistan's president leaves behind a much different nation than the one he inherited, yet his legacy from 13 years in power is getting mixed reviews More

Secret Service Head: Breach Won't Happen Again

update Julia Pierson tells a House panel investigating a recent intrusion at the White House: 'It is clear that our security plan was not executed properly' More

Frustrated, Liberian Students Want Ebola Fight Role

Thousands have volunteered to go to counties, rural villages to talk to people in their language about deadly virus More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Malaysia Struggles to Stop People Joining Jihadi
X
Mahi Ramakrishnan
September 30, 2014 2:16 PM
Malaysian authorities say militant groups like the so-called "Islamic State" have used social media to entice at least three dozen Malaysian Muslims to fight in what they call "jihad" in Syria and Iraq. As Mahi Ramkrishnan reports from Kuala Lumpur, counterterrorism police are deeply worried about what could happen when these militants return home.
Video

Video Malaysia Struggles to Stop People Joining Jihad

Malaysian authorities say militant groups like the so-called "Islamic State" have used social media to entice at least three dozen Malaysian Muslims to fight in what they call "jihad" in Syria and Iraq. As Mahi Ramkrishnan reports from Kuala Lumpur, counterterrorism police are deeply worried about what could happen when these militants return home.
Video

Video Could US Have Done More to Stop Rise of Islamic State?

President Obama says airstrikes against Islamic State militants in Syria will likely continue for some time because, in his words, "there is a cancer that has grown for too long." So what if President Obama had acted sooner in Syria to arm more-moderate opponents of both the Islamic State and the Syrian government? VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports from the United Nations.
Video

Video Treasure Hunters Seek 'Hidden Treasure' in Central Kenya

Could a cave in a small village in central Kenya be the site of buried treasure? A rumor of riches, left behind by colonialists, has some residents dreaming of wealth, while others see it as a dangerous hoax. VOA's Gabe Joselow has the story.
Video

Video Iran's Rouhani Skeptical on Syria Strikes

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani expressed skepticism Friday that U.S.-led airstrikes in Iraq and Syria could crush Islamic State militants. From New York, VOA’s Margaret Besheer reports the president was also hopeful that questions about Iran’s nuclear program could be resolved soon.
Video

Video US House Speaker: Congress Should Debate Authorization Against IS

As wave after wave of U.S. airstrikes target Islamic State militants, the speaker of the Republican-controlled House of Representatives says he would be willing to call Congress back into session to debate a formal, broad authorization for the use of military force. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports from Washington, where legislators left town 10 days ago for a seven-week recess.
Video

Video Ebola Patients Find No Treatment at Sierra Leone Holding Center

At a holding facility in Makeni, central Sierra Leone, dozens of sick people sit on the floor in an empty university building. They wait in filthy conditions. It's a 16-hour drive by ambulance to Kailahun Ebola treatment center. Adam Bailes was there and reports on what he says are some of the worst situations he has seen since the beginning of this Ebola outbreak. And he says it appears case numbers may already be far worse than authorities acknowledge.
Video

Video Identifying Bodies Found in Texas Border Region

Thousands of immigrants have died after crossing the border from Mexico into remote areas of the southwestern United States in recent years. Local officials in south Texas alone have found hundreds of unidentified bodies and buried them in mass graves in local cemeteries. Now an anthropologist and her students at Baylor University have been exhuming bodies and looking for clues to identify them. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from Waco, Texas.
Video

Video Ebola Robs Liberians of Chance to Say Good-Bye to Loved Ones

In Liberia, where Ebola has killed more than 1,500 people, authorities have worked hard to convince people to allow specialized burial teams to take away dead bodies. But these safety measures, while necessary, make it hard for people to say good bye to their loved ones. VOA's Anne Look reports on the tragedy from Liberia.
Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.

AppleAndroid