Algeria Sacks Military Generals, Confiscates Their Passports

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Rabat – Algerian President Abdelaziz Bouteflika has fired senior military officials and ordered the confiscation of their passports.

Alg24 reported that the list of dismissed military officials includes Menad Nouba, Said Bey, Abderrezak Cherif, Boudjema Boudouaour, and Habib Chentouf.

The officials are allegedly facing charges of the traffic of influence and abuse of power, according to Observe Algerie.

Authorities opened an investigation into the military officials.

According to the news outlet, the investigation is part of others opened into several top officials suspected of corruption following the seizure of 701 kilograms of cocaine at the port of Oran in May.

In August, the secretary-general of Algeria’s Workers Party, Louisa Hanoune, heavily criticized the Algerian regime. The politician condemned the “mafiaization of state institutions,” referring to the arrest of senior officials involved in cocaine trafficking.

According to the politician, the scandal “reveals a mafiaization of state institutions already gangrenous by widespread corruption.”

Hanoune pointed out that Algeria lives in “political congestion,” expressing concerns over the next presidential election.

The politician said that the election will take place in a “dangerous context” that might lead the country to the “unknown.”

Many officials, especially from the Algerian ruling party, the National Liberation Front, called on Bouteflika to run for a fifth term in the 2019 presidential election.

However, several local news outlets quoted officials, authors, and journalists expressing dissatisfaction with the Algerian political system.

Bouteflika has been president of Algeria since 1999. In 2013, the head of state suffered a debilitating stroke.