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Algeria: largest Islamic party refuses to join new government

Algerian elections staff count ballots for parliamentary elections at a polling station in Bouchaoui, on the western outskirts of the capital Algiers, on June 12, 2021 [RYAD KRAMDI/AFP via Getty Images]
Algerian elections staff count ballots for parliamentary elections at a polling station in Bouchaoui, on the western outskirts of the capital Algiers, on June 12, 2021 [RYAD KRAMDI/AFP via Getty Images]

The largest Islamist party in Algeria, the Movement for Society of Peace (MSP), announced on Tuesday that it will not take part in the government being formed after the recent legislative election. The announcement was made by MSP leader Abdel Razzaq Makri after an emergency meeting of the movement's Shura (Consultative) Council, to consider an offer from the presidency to participate in the next government.

Makri said that the President of the Republic, Abdelmadjid Tebboune, had been informed of the decision in advance of the media statement.

Tebboune accepted the resignation of the government of Prime Minister Abdelaziz Djerad after holding the first parliamentary election since Abdelaziz Bouteflika (1999-2019) resigned from the presidency on 2 April, 2019, under the pressure of popular protests against his rule.

The former ruling National Liberation Front won 98 out of 407 seats in the People's National Assembly. Independents ranked second with 84 seats, followed by the MSP with 65 seats, and the Democratic National Rally (the second party of the former ruling coalition) with 58 seats.

With the conservative Future Front winning 48 seats and the Islamic National Construction Movement getting 39, this means that having a simple majority in parliament requires a coalition of at least three parliamentary blocs to reach the 204-seat threshold.

READ: Algeria arrests 35 on charges of fraud, forgery during elections 

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