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Algerian army chief repeats call to declare president unfit for office

Published: Updated:

Algeria's army chief repeated a call on Saturday to declare President Abdelaziz Bouteflika unfit for office under article 102 of the constitution and told opponents not to seek to undermine the military.

Army Chief of Staff Ahmed Gaed Salah said in a statement issued by the Defense Ministry that most people supported the army's plan but some were resisting.

Salah presided over a meeting at the army’s headquarters on Saturday evening, which included both the commander of the military and the Secretary-General of the Ministry of National Defense. The meeting reportedly focused on studying the developments of the situation in Algeria after the proposal to activate Article 102 of the constitution.

Under the constitution, the chairman of parliament's upper house, Abdelkader Bensalah, would serve as caretaker president for at least 45 days if Bouteflika stepped down. There is, however, no obvious long-term successor.

The latest moves further isolate Bouteflika, who has failed to placate ongoing mass protests by reversing a decision to seek a fifth term.