Defiant Protests In Algiers For Democratic Change

Around 400 to 500 demonstrators took to the streets of Algiers in defiance of a nationwide ban on protests to demand democratic change as they also called for the release of over 60 members of the Hirak anti-government movement that saw president Abdelaziz Bouteflika step down last year.

The weekly demonstrations that followed the event came to a halt earlier this year due to coronavirus prevention restrictions in light of the pandemic.

The protests resulted in the arrest of over 20 people; according to a prisoners support committee, the CNLD. The event is reminiscent of the coincidental anniversary of the October 1988 demonstrations that had Algeria declare a state of emergency — leaving hundreds of citizens dead but also ushering in political reform that ended a single-party system.

A resurgence of rallies in Algeria is expected with less than a month to go before a key referendum on constitutional reform — a vote the government hopes will meet protesters’ demands.

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