Thank you for joining the Project on Middle East Democracy (POMED) for a panel discussion featuring:
Independent Analyst on North Africa, Georgia State University
Specialist in African Affairs, Congressional Research Service
(speaking by video from Algiers)
Research Fellow, École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales
Visiting Professor of Political Science and International Affairs, George Washington University
Executive Director, POMED
Monday, April 15
2:00 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Project on Middle East Democracy (POMED)
1730 Rhode Island Avenue NW, Suite 617
Washington, DC 20036
Since February, millions of Algerians have taken to the streets week after week for historic, peaceful mass protests against a fifth term for President Abdelaziz Bouteflika and for democratic change. The popular pressure led to the postponement of the April 24 presidential elections and, on April 2, to Bouteflika’s resignation after 20 years in power. Abdelkader Bensalah, long a key ally of Bouteflika and since 2002 the Speaker of Algeria’s upper house of parliament, has been appointed interim president. This appointment is in line with Algeria’s constitution, but is contrary to protesters’ demand for a genuinely independent figure to oversee this transitional period. The next steps remain unclear and many Algerians worry that the regime will resist a democratic transition. Thank you for joining POMED to hear from a panel of Algeria experts who will analyze what led to the protests, what has happened so far, and what might happen next.