5 candidates announced for Algeria’s election

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FILE PHOTO: Algeria's Senate President Abdelkader Bensalah waits for the arrival of French President Emmanuel Macron at Houari Boumediene airport in Algiers, Algeria December 6, 2017. REUTERS/Zohra Bensemra/File Photo
FILE PHOTO: Algeria’s Senate President Abdelkader Bensalah waits for the arrival of French President Emmanuel Macron at Houari Boumediene airport in Algiers, Algeria December 6, 2017. REUTERS/Zohra Bensemra/File Photo

Algeria’s electoral body has announced five candidates for the December 12 presidential election, including two former prime ministers and all products of the system rejected by months of pro-democracy protests.

The electoral authority on Saturday validated the candidacies of former prime ministers Ali Benflis and Abdelmadjid Tebboune, and two former ministers, one of them a moderate Islamist, plus the head of a small party.

The elections are to replace former longtime President Abdelaziz Bouteflika, forced to resign in April after protests and a warning from army chief Ahmed Gaid Salah.

The announcement came a day after tens of thousands of Algerians marched for a 37th consecutive week to demand an end to Algeria’s post-colonial political system. Protesters don’t trust those currently in power to ensure democratic elections.

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