World, Africa

Police close Algiers' central square to demonstrators

Protesters continue to call for departure of all Bouteflika-era officials

Hassan Jebril   | 17.05.2019
Police close Algiers' central square to demonstrators ALGIERS, ALGERIA - MAY 3 : Algerians attend a demonstration to demand the departure of all government officials closely associated with former President Abdelaziz Bouteflika in Algiers, Algeria, 03 May 2019. ( Farouk Batiche - Anadolu Agency )

ALGIERS 

Algerian security forces on Friday barred protesters from entering the capital’s central Al-Barid Square.

Roughly 2,000 demonstrators attempted to converge on the square Friday morning, but were prevented from doing so -- for the first time -- by police.

Al-Barid Square has become a symbol of an ongoing popular uprising in Algeria, which prompted President Abdelaziz Bouteflika to step down last month after weeks of popular protest against his 20-year rule.

Despite Bouteflika’s resignation, however, protesters have remained on the streets of Algiers -- and of other cities -- to demand the departure of all Bouteflika-era officials, including interim President Abdelkader Bensaleh.

The army is currently overseeing a 90-day transitional period and has promised to hold presidential elections on July 4.

*Writing by Mahmoud Barakat

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