Ali Laskri, the leader of the Algerian opposition Socialist Front Forces, has given his damning verdict on the country’s parliamentary election.
He told euronews that Thursday’s vote was riddled with irregularities.
Ali Laskri: There were many problems. Some people couldn’t vote because they could not find their names on the voting register. There were polling stations that were closed. So there were a lot of constraints placed on those casting ballots. That also makes a difference for the results.
We know how the Algerian parliament works. Those who take dirty money often get in, so it’s a parliament for doing business and cutting deals, rather than a parliament that passes laws for the benefit of Algerians and their rights.
euronews: Moderate Islamist parties close to the government were expected to be the big winners in this election, do you think they have deliberately been sidelined?
Ali Laskri: Islamists are not the solution after the dark decade of the 1990s that followed their cancelled election victory in 1991. The country has seen a lot of violence and poverty – nearly half of all Algerians live below the poverty line.
There are also real threats on our borders: Libya, Mali, the Sahel. So these elections are a failure for the government and the Islamists have also failed in Algeria today.