Islamists Fail to Win Algeria Elections (INN) ISRAEL NATIONAL NEWS) By Elad Benari, Canada 05/12/12)
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Islamists suffered a surprising defeat in Algeria´s parliamentary
elections, The Associated Press reported on Friday.
The Islamists’ defeat is surprising, in the wake of a trend that saw
them gain power across North Africa after Arab Spring uprisings.
According to AP, the three party Islamist “Green Alliance” claimed
that the results of Thursday´s elections were rigged to keep them out
of power in a country that has experienced decades of violence
between radical Islamist groups and security forces.
The Green Alliance was widely expected to do well, but instead it was
the pro-government National Liberation Front that has ruled the
country for much of its history that dominated the election.
The FLN, as it is known by its French initials, took 220 seats out of
462, while a sister party, also packed with government figures, took
another 68 seats. The Islamist alliance, meanwhile, took just 48
seats, less than in the last election.
“We are surprised by these results, which are illogical, unreasonable
and unacceptable,” Abou Djara Soltani, the head of the largest party
in the alliance, told AP, attributing the results to “those who would
like to return to a single party rule.”
Soltani said his alliance would discuss whether they would pull out
of parliament, but said their most likely move was to attempt to ally
with the smattering of other leftist and liberal parties in the
“These results will send the Algerian spring backwards,” he added.
Algeria was one of the countries to be hit by protests during the
Arab Spring, and hundreds were arrested by riot police as they called
for the President Abdelaziz Bouteflika’s resignation.
Bouteflika subsequently lifted a state of emergency imposed in 1992,
as Islamist militants waged war over the government´s decision to
ignore elections that gave a majority to a Muslim party. He announced
reforms and said the new parliament would be involved in rewriting
In February, Bouteflika called Thursday’s elections and claimed they
would pave the way to rebuilding the Algerian state to one
characterized by good governance and social justice.
Bouteflika promised a clean election with surveillance carried out by
representatives of the political parties as well as an independent
political commission. He said that international observers will also
be allowed to monitor the contests.
The Islamists, however, said the overwhelming victory for the
government parties were fraudulent.
“Of course there was fraud,” Abderrazzak Mukri, the alliance´s
campaign manager, told AP. He said initial tabulations from voting
stations Thursday night had put the Islamist party as a close second
to the FLN.
Interior Minister Dahu Ould Kablia, who announced the results Friday,
dismissed any possibilities of fraud and described the elections as
free, transparent and fair.
“There was no fraud,” he was quoted as having said at the press
conference. “If anyone has proof, they have 10 days to present it.”
(IsraelNationalNews © 2012 05/12/12)
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