resident Abdelaziz Bouteflika
President Abdelaziz Bouteflika of Algeria in power since 1999

Millions of Algerians have taken to the streets to sack long serving President, Abdelaziz Bouteflika, who is 81 years old and uses a wheelchair.

Why it matters: Bouteflika has been President of Algeria for 20 years since 1999, and the people are opposing his fifth term in office and are asking him to take time off and treat himself.

Protesters take to the streets in Algiers to sack Bouteflika

The 81-year-old president, who uses a wheelchair, has rarely been seen in public since suffering a stroke in 2013.

Protests are banned in the capital Algiers since 2001 but the protesters completely overwhelmed security forces on Friday in their move to force out Bouteflika.

The protests, launched on the social media, started after Friday’s prayers.

The people came out from everywhere, from many cities across the country with the same cry: President Bouteflika must go.

Security forces fired teargas and gunshots but they did little to dissuade the people.

In the end, security forces resorted to protecting the presidential palace, praying the people would not get there in their spirit of revolt.

But for how long? No one knows.

Early this year, Bouteflika announced in a statement that he will run for another term on April 18.

Isolated, he sacked Algeria’s police chief in a move that came just weeks ahead of the April elections.



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