The president of Algeria’s League for Human Rights Mustapha Bouchachi was caught up in the crowds in Algiers, prevented from reaching the city centre by the massive police operation that sought to snuff out any occupation by the people before it started. euronews was able to reach his general secretary by telephone.
“We want peaceful change, based on democratic principles and respect for human rights. The Algerian regime is a complex one. Power doesn’t lie in the hands of the president, because the military institution monopolises power.
But in general the Algerian people want real changes; not a change within the regime, but a total, systemic change.
These 12th of February demonstrations are just the start of a process that aims for the goal of peaceful, democratic change.
The Algerian people have voluntarily made enormous sacrifices, starting with the war of independence, and followed by the October 1988 uprising. All the gains made then were aborted when the electoral process in 1992 was interrupted. This led to years of terrorism, but today it’s 2011, almost 10 since the end of politicial violence in Algeria. The Algerian people want to live in a different world to the one in which they’ve toiled these last 20 years.
Algeria’s young people, the group we all call the “The State of Emergency Generation” aspire to a new tomorrow, a tomorrow where you can live freely, and find your place in society,” said Khelil Abdelmoumène.
An astonishing 75 percent of Algerians are 30 years old or younger.