Algerian presidential candidate condemns campaign violence
Ali Benflis hopes to defeat President Bouteflika, who is seeking his fourth term, in the upcoming presidential elections. (AFP/File)
Presidential candidate Ali Benflis condemned violence that erupted at a campaign rally for his rival, Abdelaziz Bouteflika, on Saturday, AFP reports.
Clashes broke out at a rally for President Bouteflika after protestors stormed the event and began torching portraits of the President. Protestors then attacked a television crew, according to AFP.
Benflis spoke out against the violence on Sunday.
"I regret that this campaign is taking place in a climate of tensions. I have to be honest and say nothing has been done to ensure it is taking place in a calm and serene atmosphere,” he said, adding, “I call for the respect of freedom of expression in all circumstances, a value which is the cornerstone of my policy of national renewal."
Bouteflika’s decision to run for a fourth term has been met with controversy because of the President’s age and failing health. He has not been able to campaign himself because of a debilitating stroke that he suffered last year.
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