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Dialogue ‘only wayout’ of Algeria crisis: Army chief

Algerians protest during a demonstration against President Abdelaziz Bouteflika in Oran, Algeria on 29 March 2019 [AFP/Getty Images]
Algerians protest against President Abdelaziz Bouteflika in Oran, Algeria on 29 March 2019 [AFP/Getty Images]

Algeria’s military chief-of-staff, Gen. Ahmed Gaid Saleh, on Wednesday asserted that dialogue was the only wayout of the country’s crisis, Anadolu reports.

Speaking during a visit to the 5th military zone, Saleh praised the positive response of some political sides to proposed initiative for dialogue.

The top military officer, however; warned of “sides that reject proposed initiatives and work on planting plots,” according to a statement by the Defense Ministry.

“I am convinced that the adoption of a constructive dialogue with state institutions is the only wayout of the crisis,” Saleh asserted.

READ: Algeria FM visits Saudi Arabia, meets king 

The army chief went on to underline the need to keep the “peaceful nature of protests” to maintain national security and avoid undermining the country’s unity.

Algerian President Abdelaziz Bouteflika, 82, stepped down last month following several weeks of popular protests against his continued rule.

Abdelkader Bensalah, a former speaker of parliament, is currently serving as interim president for a 90-day transitional period — overseen by the army — during which presidential elections will be held.

Demonstrators, however, have continued to call for the removal of all government officials associated with the Bouteflika regime, including Bensalah.

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