Limits lifted on Algerian presidential terms

A controversial move to lift the limits on presidential terms in Algeria has been approved by the country’s parliament.
 
Opposition politicians claim the measure is designed to allow the current President, Abdelaziz Bouteflika, to stay in office for life.  
 
The 71-year-old’s second and final term is due to come to an end in April next year.
 
Bouteflika is yet to say whether he wants another term, but he maintains the change is designed to boost democracy and the smooth running of government.
 
The measure was expected to be passed because Bouteflika’s ruling coalition has an overwhelming majority in the lower and upper houses of parliament.
 
The president rejected calls for a referendum on the issue, arguing the changes will not altar the basic system of political power.

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