ALGIERS-Demonstrators took part in peaceful marches across several regions of the country on Friday to call once again for “a radical change in the system” and “continued efforts to fight corruption”. They also welcomed “serious initiatives” for dialogue to end the crisis.
On this 22nd consecutive Friday of “Hirak”, the number of demonstrators was visibly significantly lower than previous marches, according to APS reporters.
In Algiers, even if citizen mobilization did not falter on this hot day that ends the 5th month of popular marches, many of those who were used to come to Algiers Center to demonstrate, have changed destination and headed to the 5-July stadium, located on the heights of the capital where the match will be broadcast live on giant screens in the presence of a record audience.
In the west of the country, hundreds of people of all ages participated in the weekly peaceful marches to reiterate their demands, including “the departure of all symbols of the system” and “continued fight against corruption”.
In Oran, as in the other provinces in the west, the marchers met after the great Friday prayer to beat the pavement of the main streets of provinces before gathering in front of public buildings and squares.
In Mostaganem, demonstrators first gathered at the Independence Square in the city centre before heading to the headquarters of the People’s Provincial Assembly (APWI) and the People’s Communal Assembly (APN). Carrying dozens of national emblems and banners with various demands, the marchers chanted slogans calling for “the independence of justice.”
In Tiaret, dozens of people took part in the peaceful march calling for the continuation of the fight against corruption and reiterated their commitment to national unity, chanting “Djeich, chaab, khawa khawa” (The Algerian Army and people are brothers).
In the province of Saida, the demonstrators renewed their demands for “the independence of the judiciary” and “the fight against corruption.”
In Relizane and other cities in the province, citizens braved the heat exceeding 40 degrees to demand continuous fight against corrupters and corrupt people and, as well as a “serious dialogue” to settle the crisis. Marchers in the provinces of Tissemsilt, Sidi Bel-Abbes and Tlemcen showed the same enthusiasm.
Despite unbearable heat, men, women and children in the provinces of Tizi-Ouzou, Bejaia, Boumerdes and Bouira chanted traditional political demands of the “Hirak”, reiterating their determination to bring about change in a peaceful manner. They also called for “respect for popular sovereignty”, “the release of opinion prisoners.”
Citizens unanimously welcome dialogue initiatives
In the east of the country, peaceful popular marches took place in several provinces to demand a “radical change” in the system and to call for a “dialogue led by consensual national personalities.”
Citizens in Constantine brandished the national emblem and reiterated their demand for “a radical change in the current political system”. “The CAN returns every two years but the Hirak, once in a lifetime” and “The People Will Win” were the slogans brandished by marchers.
From the city of Mila, the crowd who observed a stopover in front of the province’s headquarters welcomed resort to dialogue to find a solution to the current crisis. “Yes to dialogue, yes for consensual personalities to lead the dialogue,” the crowd chanted.
In Oum El Bouaghi, citizens peacefully beat the pavement to reaffirm their determination to continue their peaceful struggle, chanting: “An independent judiciary and a free press”, “A rule of law” and “No foreign interference in Algeria’s internal affairs.”
In Khenchela, the crowd sang patriotic songs and chanted “Djeich chaab Khawa Khawa” (People and Army are brothers) and “Go all”, while in Skikda, groups of demonstrators, who reinvested the city centre, chanted “Freedom to opinion.”
In Setif, the population, as in previous Fridays, braved the heat wave to criss-cross the city’s main streets, chanting “Yes to elections supervised by national figures.”