Algerian army chief says presidential elections to be held as scheduled

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Ahmed Gaid Salah Chief of Staff of the Algerian Army on June 27, 2012. (Photo by Billal Bensalem/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
FILE PHOTO: Ahmed Gaid Salah Chief of Staff of the Algerian Army. (Photo by Billal Bensalem/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

Algerian Army Chief of Staff Ahmed Gaid Salah affirmed on Wednesday that the presidential elections will take place on December 12 as scheduled, official news agency APS reported.

The upcoming presidential elections emanated from the willingness of the people who seek to lay the foundation for a new state led by a president enjoying their confidence, said Gaid Salah.

He said that Algerian people, especially the youth, “have reached a high degree of awareness and are determined to go to the presidential elections.”

He stressed that the army was committed to protecting the people until the end of the sensitive stage of presidential elections.

“All guarantees related to the elections have been provided and everything is fine,” said the army chief. “There is no room for anyone to claim that the conditions are not favorable.”

Algeria has been gripped by mass protests since February 22, which forced former President Abdelaziz Bouteflika to resign on April 2.

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