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Algeria begins political consultations ahead of july presidential elections

Algerian interim President Abdelkader Bensalah held talks on Thursday with former parliament Speaker Abdelaziz Ziari, announced the presidency through its state news agency, APS.

No details on the purpose of this meeting were provided.

“Bensalah has begun a series of consultations with political parties, unions and civil society organizations to find solutions to the crisis,” Ziari said in a phone call with Asharq Al-Awsat.

“It did not appear to me that Bensalah was thinking about resigning. He is a person who bears his responsibilities,” stressed Ziari.

He noted that the interim president is preparing to “set a national and sovereign commission to secure fair and transparent” presidential elections on July 4.

Bensalah was appointed as interim president by parliament after the resignation of longtime ruler Abdelaziz Bouteflika following weeks of protests. His appointment was rejected by the demonstrators, who are now demanding a complete change in the country’s political class.

Opposition parties have also refused to recognize Bensalah, announcing on Tuesday their rejection of his call for consultations.

Bensalah also received Front El Moustakbal party head Abdelaziz Belaid and discussed with him the issues he brought up by Ziari, according to a government source.

Meanwhile, former Prime Minister Ahmed Benbitour announced his readiness to participate in searching for a political solution to the impasse hitting the country for more than two months now.

“I have prepared a proposal for a solution to the current crisis,” he told Asharq Al-Awsat.

Read the original article here.

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