Algeria's Bouteflika Campaign Manager Sacks: State Media

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Algeria's ailing President Abdelaziz Bouteflika has faced a mass of protests against his bid for a fifth term in power. By RYAD KRAMDI (AFP / File)

Algeria's ailing President Abdelaziz Bouteflika has faced a mass of protests against his bid for a fifth term in power. By RYAD KRAMDI (AFP / File)

Algeria's President Abdelaziz Bouteflika sacked his veteran campaign manager Saturday, state media reported, following mass protests against the ailing leader's decision to stand for a fifth term in office.

Form first Abdelmalek Sellal – who oversaw Bouteflika's past three successful re-election bids – was removed just ahead of a deadline for election hopefuls to formally submit their candidacy.

Abdelghani Zaalene, the transport minister, APS news agency said, quoting Bouteflika's campaign team.

While no reason was given for the decision, it comes after the protesters on Friday against the 82-year-old president standing for re-election.

Bouteflika, rarely seen in public since 2013, has been in Switzerland for nearly a week for "routine medical checks" according to his office.

There is no legal requirement for election contenders to be in the country on Sunday to meet the midnight (2300 GMT) deadline to submit their candidacy for the April 18 vote.

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