On April 17th presidential elections are scheduled in Algeria. The current president, Abdelaziz Bouteflika, who has been in power for the last fifteen years, will run again. His candidature has caused a lot of resistance by opponents, which have staged several protests. Next to the current president, eleven candidates have registered for the elections. The Constitutional Council have examined all applications and approved those of six candidates. Despite this number, changes that Bouteflika will win again are huge.
Algeria’s main Islamist party, the Movement for the Society of Peace (MSP), will boycott the presidential elections due to be held on April 17th. Party chief Abderrazak Mokri made the announcement on January 25 to journalists following two days of debate within the MSP. He said the party will boycott the election because of “the lack of real opportunity for political reform, the monopoly of those currently in power over the election and the fact that political demands for transparency are ignored.” Mokri said the authorities are seeking to “trump the will of the people to freely choose who governs.”