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Algerians use independence day celebrations for pro-democracy campaign

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By Philip Andrew Churm
Algerians use independence day celebrations for pro-democracy campaign

Tens of thousands of Algerians took to the streets of the capital, Algiers, for the 20th successive Friday to demand new democratic leadership but also to celebrate the 57th anniversary of the country's independence from France.

Crowds on the streets of Algiers expressed their frustration at the current government.

One protester, Houria, said she was disapointed with the current administration.

"I do not care about what the current powers are are offering. They are not coming with anything new. This proves that we cannot trust them at all."

Ali Maarif, who was also among the demonstrators, said: "I do not trust the interim president Abdelkader Bensalah. We do not want any elections with him or Prime Minister Noureddine Bedoui. We have people who are capable of running the country, including inside the Army."

Friday's demonstrations took place in at least a dozen cities across Algeria.

A peaceful revolt that began in February helped drive out long-time President Abdelaziz Bouteflika in April.