ALGIERS- Libya, through Moussa Al-Kouni, Vice-President of the Presidential Council, offered its condolences on the death of the former President of the Republic, Abdelaziz Bouteflika.
On his Twitter account, the senior Libyan official described the late Abdelaziz Bouteflika as a “model of wisdom and leadership” who, like Habib Bourguiba, the former Tunisian president, could “have become a symbol, if he had not clung to power ”.
“Bouteflika left in silence, bequeathing national cohesion and harmony to his country. He brought Algeria out of its slump and destined it to glory after a decade of lean and heartbreak. He was a model of wisdom and leadership, especially in the face of unrest. He, like Bourguiba, could have been a symbol, if they hadn’t (both) clung to power. Our condolences to Algeria and to ourselves, “he wrote.
Former Algerian President Abdelaziz Bouteflika died at the age of 84, reported the Presidency of the Republic late Friday.
The late Bouteflika, a veteran of Algeria’s war for independence, had ruled Algeria for two decades before his resignation in April 2019.
He joined the independence war against France at the age of 19 as a protege of commander Boumediene, who became president in 1965.
After Algeria’s independence from France in 1962, Bouteflika became minister of youth and tourism at the age of 25. The following year, he became Algeria’s second foreign minister and the youngest person in the world to hold such a position.
The deceased was an influential figure in the Non-Aligned Movement that gave a global voice to Africa, Asia and Latin America.
As a president of the U.N. General Assembly, Bouteflika invited former Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat to address the body in 1974, a historic step toward international recognition of the Palestinian cause.
He, also, demanded that China be given a seat in the United Nations, and railed against apartheid rule in South Africa.
He championed post-colonial states, challenging the hegemony of the United States.
He also welcomed Che Guevara, and a young Nelson Mandela got his first training in Algeria. Black Panther Eldridge Cleaver, on the run from U.S. police, was given refuge.
Elected president in 1999, he launched a national reconciliation process allowing the country to restore peace.
President Abdelaziz Bouteflika resigned on Tuesday, April 2, 2019, a few weeks before the end of his term of office on April 28.
To God we belong and to Him we shall return …
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