Bouteflika promises key reforms if re-elected for fifth term

Bouteflika, who is still in Geneva for medical care, officially submitted his candidacy for the presidential election due on April 18.

Algerian President Abdelaziz Bouteflika on Sunday pledged to carry out profound reforms to meet the demand of the ongoing massive protests in the North African country.

In a message to the nation read by his campaign director Abdelghani Zaalane, 82-year-old Bouteflika, who is running for his fifth presidential term, said if re-elected, he would organize new presidential elections ahead of schedule in which he would not run for, in a bid to guarantee smooth transfer of power.

The president also said if re-elected, he would "organize an inclusive conference open for all tendencies to discuss freely new political, social and economy reforms."

The recommendations of the conference would be used "to lay the foundations of the new republic and a new regime,"  Bouteflika explained.

The date of the early presidential election will be decided by the inclusive conference, he added.

Notably, the Algerian president pledged to implement a revision of the Constitution through a referendum.

Earlier in the day, Bouteflika, who is still in Geneva for medical care, officially submitted his candidacy for the presidential election due on April 18.

A total of seven people have so far submitted their candidacy to the Algerian Constitutional Council.

Xinhua

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