Algerian Islamist party expects to win early elections

Algerian Islamist party expects to win early elections
The Islamist party, which is aligned to the Muslim Brotherhood, expects to win the early Algerian elections this month, vowing to form a national unity cabinet if it does.
2 min read
08 June, 2021
Makri expects his MSP party will win the elections. [Getty Images]

Algeria’s largest Islamist party is expected to win the country's early legislative elections scheduled for this month, claiming that they had the "strong campaign".

In comments made to Anadolu Agency, leader of the Movement of Society for Peace (MSP), Abderrazak Makri, said his party was ahead of opponents just days before the 12 June polls.

"MSP has launched the strongest campaign for the polls and enjoys wide acceptance among the population," he told Anadolu Agency. "Our movement is the only party that has a strong and stable structure throughout the national territory and enjoys a broad acceptance within the society."

Makri said he will look into forming a national unity government if the MSP - aligned with the international Muslim Brotherhood movement - manages to gain a majority in the Algerian parliament.

He added this was crucial for Algeria's struggling economy, which "requires broader political and social consensus to support the government".

He brushed off claims that his party’s participation in any government will be problematic.

"Our presence in the government is a normal thing," Makri said. "The obsession with the arrival of Islamic parties to power exists in the Arab Mashreq (Middle East), but in the Arab Maghreb (North Africa) Islamic parties are national parties and their presence is very natural."

The 1991-2002 Algerian civil war pitted the Algerian government against various Islamist rebel groups, some of them extremists.

Protests have continued in Algeria following economic deterioration, which has been exacerbated by the fall in oil revenues and political deadlock.

The so-called-Hirak protest movement was sparked in February 2019 over President Bouteflika's bid for a fifth term in office.