| Africatime
Tuesday 25 April 2017
(Xinhuanet 04/19/17)
Algerian election authorities on Tuesday gave a 48-hour deadline to political parties, ordering them to show female candidates' faces on campaign posters, the state news agency reported. The High Authority for Election Monitoring (HIISE) said that parties should change the failed photos or remove the candidates from the vote. Parties in the northern province of Bordj Bou Arreridj had been showing hijabs surrounding blank spaces in place of photos of female candidates in their campaign posters. "This kind of encroachment is dangerous. It is not legal and it opposes all laws and traditions," Hassan Noui, an HIISE official, was quoted as saying. "It is every citizen's right to know whom he or she will be...
(Xinhuanet 04/19/17)
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, and the chairperson of the African Union Commission, Moussa Faki Mahamat, will convene Wedesday the first UN-AU Annual Conference. The two leaders will look into how to strengthen the partnership between the two organizations to face common challenges and opportunities in the continent, on issues of peace and security, sustainable development and human rights, said Stephane Dujarric, UN spokesman, at a daily briefing. "They will also sign the Joint United Nations-African Union Framework for an Enhanced Partnership in Peace and Security," said Dujarric. It will be the first conference Mahamat will address with the United Nation since he was elected as chairperson of the African Union Commission. Although he had brief talks with Guterres in Addis...
(AFP (eng) 04/11/17)
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres is proposing a new diplomatic push to end the decades-old dispute over Western Sahara, possibly by holding a referendum on Morocco's rule over the territory, according to a confidential report obtained by AFP on Monday. Guterres said in the report to the United Nations Security Council that he wanted "a new dynamic" and a "new spirit" in negotiations on ending one of the world's most intractable conflicts. "I intend to propose that the negotiating process be...
(Reuters (Eng) 04/11/17)
U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has called for new talks over the long-running Western Sahara dispute, saying the negotiations should include proposals from both Morocco and the Polisario independence movement, according to a U.N. document. The U.N. call for a restart to talks came after months of tensions in the disputed territory, which Morocco claims as part of its kingdom and Polisario says belongs to the Sahrawi people who fought a guerrilla war until a 1991 U.N.-backed ceasefire. U.N. attempts to...
(AFP (eng) 04/07/17)
Campaigning starts on Sunday for next month's Algerian parliamentary election as authorities desperately try to persuade disillusioned voters that their opinion counts. "Make your voice heard," reads a slogan on billboards and posters plastered in towns and villages across the North African country. Government-sponsored advertisements play in a continuous loop on television in a bid to attract a larger turnout than about 43 percent for the last legislative poll in 2012. The vote comes amid growing security and economic challenges as well as speculation around who will eventually succeed 80-year-old President Abdelaziz Bouteflika -- although experts say the real decision lies in the hands of the country's secretive elite.
(Xinhuanet 04/07/17)
Algeria and France on Thursday signed here 10 cooperation agreements and memorandums of understanding in different domains, as part of the visit of French Prime Minister, Bernard Cazeneuve, to the North African nation. The signing ceremony was attended by Algerian Prime Minister Abdelmalek Sellal and his French counterpart, Cazeneuve. They held talks in Algiers before signing the agreements, stressing on the necessity to overcome the conflicting issues hindering the development of economic cooperation and partnership between the two nations. Bilateral...
(Xinhuanet 03/28/17)
Congolese President Denis Sassou N'Guesso on Monday arrived in Algeria as part of a four-day visit at the invitation of his Algerian counterpart Abdelaziz Bouteflika to boost bilateral relations. Upon his arrival at Houari Boumediene international Airport of Algiers, President Sassou N'Guesso was welcomed by Speaker of Lower House of Parliament, Mohamed Larbi Ould Khelifa, and Foreign Minister Ramtane Lamamra in addition to top government officials. The Congolese head of state is due to meet with top Algerian officials including...
(Reuters (Eng) 03/23/17)
N'DJAMENA French far-right presidential candidate Marine Le Pen pledged on Wednesday to break with her country's decades-old relationship with Africa known as "Francafrique" and abolish the CFA franc currency policy that binds Paris and its former colonies. Francafrique describes an informal web of relationships Paris has maintained with its former African colonies and its support, sometimes in the form of military backing, for politicians who favor French business interests. Le Pen, one of the frontrunners in the presidential election, spoke...
(Reuters (Eng) 03/20/17)
Algerian President Abdelaziz Bouteflika appeared in a video on Sunday for the first time in a month since his abrupt cancellation of a meeting with German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Algiers triggered speculation over his health. Since a stroke in 2013, Bouteflika, 80, has appeared rarely in public and usually only in state news images with visiting dignitaries, leaving questions over whether the leader in power for nearly two decades will finish his term. In a video broadcast on Sunday on state television, Bouteflika was seen receiving his minister of Africa and Arab Affairs. It was his first such appearance since he postponed Merkel's visit to Algiers on Feb. 20 citing acute bronchitis.
(Middle East Monitor 03/09/17)
Algeria rejected calls for Morocco’s return to the African Union to be hailed in the Arab League on Sunday, a diplomatic source said. The diplomat, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the Algeria’s Permanent Representative to the Arab League Nadir Arbaoui refused the proposal of his Moroccan counterpart to enlist hailing Morocco’s return to the African Union to the agenda of the upcoming meeting of the Arab League prime ministers. The diplomat told the Anadolu Agency that a verbal skirmish erupted between the two representatives that resulted in ending the meeting and raised the issue to the prime ministers themselves. In January, the African Union officially accepted Morocco’s return after three
(AFP (eng) 03/08/17)
An official from the Polisario Front fighting for the independence of the Western Sahara on Tuesday blamed Morocco for the resignation of a UN envoy to the disputed territory. Christopher Ross quitting last week was a result of "Morocco blocking negotiations since 2012" on the future of the former Spanish colony, M'hamed Kheddad said. Morocco insists that the Western Sahara is an integral part of its kingdom, but the Algeria-based Polisario is demanding a referendum on self-determination. The two sides...
(AFP (eng) 03/07/17)
The UN envoy for Western Sahara has offered his resignation after leading efforts for eight years to settle the conflict between Morocco and the Polisario Front independence movement, a senior UN official said Monday. Christopher Ross submitted his resignation in a letter sent last week to UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, who is considering whether to make a new appointment. Ross's departure would highlight the failure of the United Nations to make progress in settling the decades-old conflict in north Africa...
(AFP (eng) 03/01/17)
Algeria's President Abdelaziz Bouteflika, who has rarely appeared in public since a crippling stroke in 2013, marks his 80th birthday on Thursday amid persistent doubts over his health. He suffered a bout of bronchitis in February, forcing German Chancellor Angela Merkel at the last minute to cancel a scheduled visit to Algiers and sparking renewed speculation about his future. "The president has not directly addressed the Algerians since 2012. No Algerian can believe that there is not a power vacuum,"...
(AFP (eng) 02/27/17)
Morocco said Sunday it will pull back from a zone of the contested Western Sahara that has raised tensions with Algeria-backed Polisario Front separatists. "The Kingdom of Morocco will proceed from today with a unilateral withdrawal from the (Guerguerat) zone," the foreign ministry said in a statement. It said the decision was taken by King Mohamed VI at the request of UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres. Rabat now "hopes the secretary general's intervention will allow a return to the previous...
(AFP (eng) 02/25/17)
Morocco's King Mohammed VI on Friday asked the United Nations to take urgent measures to end "provocation" by the Algeria-backed Polisario Front threatening the ceasefire in the disputed Western Sahara. Morocco insists that the former Spanish colony is an integral part of its kingdom, but the Polisario is demanding a referendum on self-determination. The two sides fought for control of the Western Sahara from 1974 to 1991, with Rabat gaining control of the territory before a UN-brokered ceasefire took effect...
(Xinhuanet 02/22/17)
German Chancellor Angela Merkel's visit to Algeria scheduled for Monday and Tuesday has been postponed to a later date due to Algerian President Bouteflika "acute bronchitis," according to the statement issued by the president office. "Algerian and German authorities mutually agreed on Monday to postpone Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany Angela Merkel's official visit," read the official APS agency's statement. The source specified that the visit will be rescheduled on a date to be agreed upon by both...
(AFP (eng) 02/21/17)
Speculation mounted Tuesday over Algerian President Abdelaziz Bouteflika's health and political future after acute bronchitis forced the 79-year-old to postpone a meeting with German Chancellor Angela Merkel. Merkel had been due to meet him Monday as part of efforts to push North African countries to reduce the flow of migrants across the Mediterranean into Europe. But Bouteflika's office said he was "temporarily unavailable due to acute bronchitis", forcing Merkel's visit to be pushed back. Bouteflika, who has been in power...
(AfricaNews 02/21/17)
The Algerian presidency has announced that the official visit by German Chancellor Angela Merkel has been postponed due to what they described as the “temporary unavailability” of President Abdelaziz Bouteflika. The statement released today disclosed that the President was suffering from “acute bronchitis,” the reason why he was unable to meet with the German Chancellor. “The Algerian and German authorities have today agreed, by mutual agreement, the postponement of the official visit to Algeria by Her Excellency Angela Merkel, Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany.
(AFP (eng) 02/20/17)
German Chancellor Angela Merkel's visit to Algiers was called off on Monday because President Abdelaziz Bouteflika was "temporarily unavailable" due to "acute bronchitis", his office said. "Algerian and German authorities have today mutually agreed to postpone the official visit" of Merkel, the presidency said in a statement. "This postponement is due to the fact that Mr Bouteflika, who is at his residence in Algiers, is temporarily unavailable due to acute bronchitis," it added. Merkel had been due to arrive in...
(AFP (eng) 02/20/17)
German Chancellor Angela Merkel visits Algeria from Monday to press efforts to get North African countries to reduce the flow of migrants across the Mediterranean into Europe. Merkel, who last week hosted Tunisian Prime Minister Youssef Chahed, is hoping for partnerships with Maghreb countries and Egypt to prevent a new wave of migrants making the dangerous sea crossing to the EU. Merkel arrives in Algiers at 1700 GMT before holding meetings with Prime Minister Abdelmalek Sellal and, on Tuesday, President Abdelaziz Bouteflika. Algeria is a key actor in seeking to stabilise neighbouring Libya...

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