Bouteflika first public appearance since April

2014-07-05 20:28
Abdelaziz Bouteflika (Picture: AFP)

Abdelaziz Bouteflika (Picture: AFP)

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Algiers - Algeria's ailing President Abdelaziz Bouteflika took part in independence celebrations and appeared in public on Saturday for the first time since he was sworn in for a fourth term in April.

State television showed Bouteflika, 77, a former officer in the National Liberation Army (NLA), seated in a wheelchair as he laid a wreath at the martyrs' cemetery in El-Alia, an Algiers suburb, for the 52nd anniversary of independence.

He heard Muslim prayers, was honoured by Republican Guards, kissed the national flag and was greeted by Algeria's main political leaders.

The former French colony gained its independence in 1962 after a seven-year war of independence led by the NLA following more than a century of occupation.

Bouteflika, who was sworn in on 28 April after an election victory despite chronic health problems, has since received foreign leaders at his Zeralda residence, west of the capital.

He has also sent several messages of support to the Algerian team before they were eliminated from the football World Cup in Brazil, where they advanced to the last 16 for the first time.

Read more on:    abdelaziz bouteflika  |  algeria  |  north africa
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