Algerian President Tebboune dissolves Parliament and calls for elections

Leader has expressed dissatisfaction with government

epa08930666 (FILE) - Algerian President-elect Abdelmadjid Tebboune speaks during a press conference in Algiers, Algeria, 13 December 2019 (reissued 10 January 2021) Algerian President Tebboune on 10 January 2021 embarked to Germany to have previously planned non-urgent minor surgery in his foot performed, the presidency said. Tebboune had previously been treated in Germany for Covid-19  EPA/MOHAMED MESSARA *** Local Caption *** 56446602
Powered by automated translation

Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune on Thursday called for Parliament to be dissolved and early elections after expressing dissatisfaction with the government.

In an address to the nation, Mr Tebboune said he would carry out a government reshuffle within 48 hours and issued a pardon for dozens of jailed activists from the Hirak protest movement, which swept former president Abdelaziz Bouteflika from power.

Thousands of Algerians rallied on Tuesday in the northern town of Kherrata, regarded as the cradle of the Hirak protests

It was in Kherrata, 200 kilometres east of Algiers, that major protests first broke out in early 2019 against Mr Bouteflika's bid for a fifth term.

The following week, mass rallies spread to Algiers and across the country in a months-long movement demanding sweeping reforms.

Demonstrators in Kherrata on Tuesday carried Algerian and Berber flags and shouted slogans against the military and Mr Tebboune.

"A civilian state, not military. Freedom of the press and of expression. An independent judiciary," read one banner.

Mr Tebboune has also had tribulations on a personal level.

He returned home on Friday after a one-month stay in Germany for surgery on his foot after Covid-19 complications.