Algerian authorities on Friday reported record-low turnout in legislative elections that were boycotted by key opposition parties and marred by ethnic Berber unrest.
Algeria’s Interior Minister Yazid Zerhouni told Algerian radio that one civilian had been killed and three injured during election day riots in the Berber homeland of Kabyle on Thursday. Zerhouni told Channel 3 radio that 48 percent of voters nationwide cast their ballots — the lowest number since multiparty elections were established in 1991.
According to Reuters, the country’s former ruling party emerged on Friday as the winner of the parliamentary elections. The National Liberation Front (FLN), formerly the dominant force in Algeria's post-independence one-party socialist state, won 199 of 389 seats, up from 65 in the outgoing National People's Assembly, the Interior Ministry said. The Rally for National Democracy came in second with 48 seats, sharply down from 155 in the last chamber. The FLN is led by Prime Minister Ali Benflis.
But opposition leaders, citing fraud, dismissed the results as irrelevant and unlikely to solve the country's prolonged social and political crisis. (Albawaba.com)
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