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Algeria: Muslim Brotherhood demands that Bouteflika step down

Abderrazak Makri, head of the Society for Peace Movement in Algeria, called on President Abdelaziz Bouteflika and the ruling party to step down after weeks of mass protests in the country.

Makri, leader of the Muslim Brotherhood's political branch in Algeria, stated in an online statement, late Saturday, that the legitimacy of the popular protests is greater than that of the constitution, and that the authorities must respond quickly to the people's demands.

He added: "The gang, i.e. the ruling party, refuses to respond to the Algerian people so far. They must hear the Algerians' voices bursting in the streets and obey their demands as they are the source of power. Makri warned the Algerian people of some attempts to appropriate the popular uprising and to speak on behalf of the people in media outlets, saying: "No one represents the public opinion other than the Algerian people and the will of citizens."

He explained that "Algerians went out to the streets driven by their own will to change. No one pushed them to revolt but they were provoked by the unreasonable imposition of Bouteflika's candidacy for the fifth term and the state's continuous policy based on ignoring and turning the back on the people's demands."

Algeria: Ruling party abandons Bouteflika amid protests

Makri stressed that "the popular uprising in Algeria restored the people's dignity, despite the authorities' tireless efforts to humiliate the Algerian citizens." However, he called for "extreme caution of any party trying to circumvent the uprising which must reach its desired goals peacefully, in a way never witnessed in the world before."

A few days ago, Bouteflika announced the removal of the government, the withdrawal of his candidacy for a fifth term, and the postponement of the presidential elections scheduled for April 18.

The opposition warned that Bouteflika's decisions "serve as a pretext to extend his mandate and circumvent the popular movement that demands his departure."

It is noted that, since the announcement of the nomination of Bouteflika on 10 February, the country has witnessed a wave of protests and demonstrations rejecting such a decision. Thus, more than 1.000 judges threatened to boycott supervising the elections.

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