Middle East

Algeria army chief wants presidential election in December

ALGIERS, Algeria (AP) — Algeria’s powerful army chief says that the date of the nation’s long-delayed presidential election should be announced on Sept. 15 to quickly pull the nation out of political limbo.

By law, elections come 90 days after an announcement, which would mean a December vote.

The official APS news agency quoted Ahmed Gaid Salah as saying on Monday that an independent body “for the preparation, organization and surveillance of the election” should be quickly installed.

The country has been without an elected leader since longtime President Abdelaziz Bouteflika was forced out in April, in part by a grassroots revolt that still holds weekly protests. Many in the vast protest movement seek a transition period toward democracy rather than a quick election, and worry over Gaid Salah’s growing role as behind-the-scenes powerbroker.

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