Thousands of protesters gathered in Algiers to march in a demonstration on Friday, September 13, which marked the 30th consecutive week of anti-government protests in Algeria. Protesters demanded fundamental changes in political leadership before any election is held, as well as the release of opposition leader Karim Tabou, who was arrested on Wednesday, September 11.
Protests are expected to continue in Algiers and other Algerian cities over the coming days and weeks, and possibly strengthen in the wake of Tabou's arrest. A heightened security presence and localized transportation and business disruptions are to be anticipated around demonstration sites. Clashes between protesters and security forces cannot be ruled out.
Political tensions have been high in Algeria since former President Abdelaziz Bouteflika resigned on April 2 following weeks of protests sparked by his intention to run for a fifth term. A caretaker government was approved on March 31, though protesters have vowed to continue to hold demonstrations until elections take place.
On June 2, the Algerian Constitutional Council scrapped the July 4 presidential election, rejecting two candidates who had reportedly failed to reach 60,000 signatures in support of their candidacies. Thousands of people protested in Algiers following the announcement, demanding the removal of interim President Abdelkader Bensalah, who was instructed by the Constitutional Council to organize a new election at an unspecified later date. While Bensalah's mandate expired on July 9, he is expected to continue his tenure over the coming weeks amid additional anti-government protests and demonstrations.
Individuals in Algeria are advised to monitor developments, avoid all protests and demonstrations as a precaution, and anticipate a heightened security presence and localized business and transportation disruptions around protest sites.
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