Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 20 May 2019

TV report: Said Bouteflika and former intelligence chiefs arrested in Algeria

Abdelaziz Bouteflika's brother was de facto ruler after former president suffered a stroke in 2013

Said Bouteflika, the powerful brother of deposed Algerian president Abdelaziz Bouteflika, was arrested on May 4. AFP
Said Bouteflika, the powerful brother of deposed Algerian president Abdelaziz Bouteflika, was arrested on May 4. AFP

Algerian police have arrested Said Bouteflika, the youngest brother of former president Abdelaziz Bouteflika, and two former intelligence chiefs, Generals Bachir Athmane Tartag and Mohamed Mediene, Ennahar TV said on Saturday.

Said Bouteflika, who served as a top adviser to the presidency for more than a decade, had been Algeria's de facto ruler since his brother suffered a stroke in 2013 which left him in a wheelchair.

Algerians continue weekly protests in Algiers on May 3, 2019 to demand the removal of all figures from the regime of former president Abdelaziz Bouteflika. AP Photo
Algerians continue weekly protests in Algiers on May 3, 2019 to demand the removal of all figures from the regime of former president Abdelaziz Bouteflika. AP Photo

A security official said the former president's brother had been detained for questioning.

Massive ongoing protests calling for a radical change to Mr Bouteflika's regime pushed the ailing president to resign on April 2, but demonstrators continue to demand the removal of all those linked to the former administration.

"The arrest of Said is definitely the peak in the dismantling of Bouteflika's system," a top political source told Reuters.

Army chief of staff Ahmed Gaed Salah has promised to rid the country of corrupt politicians, oligarchs and military officials, in order to restore confidence among the people.

Several oligarchs, including Algeria's richest man Issad Rebrab, are behind bars with investigations ongoing.

Protesters are also calling for the resignation of interim president Abdelkader Bensalah, who is due to serve until an election on July 4, and Prime Minister Noureddine Bedoui.

Updated: May 5, 2019 09:14 AM

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