Official results from Algeria’s elections showed President Abdelaziz Bouteflika’s National Liberation Front and its allies won a majority in a vote that sparked accusations of fraud by Islamists, who came third.
Bouteflika’s party took 221 seats and the National Democratic Rally, the party of Prime Minister Ahmed Ouyahia, was second with 70 seats, Tayeb Belaiz, the president of the constitutional council said on television late yesterday.
The Islamist Green Algeria Alliance won 47 seats, according to Belaiz. The alliance, a bloc that groups the Movement of Society for Peace, Ennahda and the Islah party, was expecting a strong showing in the vote in which 44 parties competed for seats in the newly-expanded 462-seat legislature. The government has rejected accusations of fraud.
The race was one of the measures designed to ensure the oil-rich North African country avoided the popular uprisings that swept neighboring Tunisia and Libya as well as Egypt, and pushed Islamist parties to the political forefront.
Organizations including the United Nations, the European Union and the Arab League sent observers to monitor the vote in the country which suffered decades of violence that left more than 200,000 people dead and was sparked by the military’s intervention in the 1991 vote that Islamists were poised to win. Voter turnout was 42.4 percent.
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