Algerian president sworn in for fourth term: Begs for national unity
Sworn in for his fourth five-year-term as president of Algeria, Abdelaziz Bouteflika has appealed to his countrymen to work together towards peace and unity in a nation torn apart by differences.
Seventy-seven years of age and using a wheelchair, there has been concern that Bouteflika is too old and infirm to be in charge of this volatile African nation.
ALGERIA, ALGIERS (Catholic Online) - Seventy-seven years of age and using a wheelchair, there has been concern that Bouteflika is too old and infirm to be in charge of this volatile African nation. Sworn in this week, Bouteflika maintained his commitment towards the restoration of peace in the country.
Bouteflika seeks to preserve the national unity and ensure the protection of Islam in the country subjected to political crisis.
"I do solemnly swear that I will faithfully execute the office of President of Algeria and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution and the interests of the country as well as Islam religion," Bouteflika said.
President Bouteflika also said that he intends to make good on the proposed political reforms he had announced in 2011. The revision of the Basic Law, as part of these reforms, will include aspects related to "strengthen the separation of powers, to strengthen the independence of the judiciary and the role of Parliament, the affirmation of the role and place of the opposition and further guarantee the rights and freedoms of citizens."
Urging calm, the president also called on those having chosen terrorism as mean of expression, to surrender their weapons and reintegrate once again into society.
On the economic front, Bouteflika has pledged to implement "a diversified economy increasingly strong, complementary to our hydrocarbon potential." He also assured his commitment to the fight against regional disparities and to put an end to regional clashes, such as those that have recently occurred in Ghardaia in the southern part the country, which claimed dozens of lives.
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