Algeria to end to 19-year “state of emergency”

Anti-government protests planned for Feb. 12

With protesters planning an anti-government demonstration in Algiers on Feb. 12, the president of Algeria, Abdelaziz Bouteflika, says he will lift the country’s 19-year “state of emergency” law. The government had previously extended emergency rule in the 35-million person North African country because it said it was needed to fight terrorism. Now, Bouteflicka says he has ordered the government to “draw up appropriate provisions which will allow the state to continue to fight against terrorism with the same effectiveness [as emergency rule].” The planned protest, which is banned under the state of emergency, will be permitted by the government. Emergency rule was enacted in 1992 when it appeared the Islamic party was set to beat the country’s more secular party in parliamentary elections. Bouteflika, elected first in 1999, removed the two-term limit on the presidency in 2008, allowing him to stay in power indefinitely.

France 24