Connect to share and comment
Algeria voted to keep the ruling party in power in parliamentary elections, with the government hailing a “higher than expected” voter turnout despite boycott fears.
Algeria voted to keep the ruling party in power in parliamentary elections, the results revealed on Friday, according to Reuters.
The National Liberation Front (FLN), which has been in power for the past 50 years was expected to be the largest party in parliament, holding 220 out of 462 seats, according to Interior Minister Daho Ould Kablia, who oversaw the election.
The election increased the FLN's share of seats from 34 percent to 47 percent, with the National Democratic Rally coming a distant second with 68 seats.
Kablia said, "The election has reinforced the Algerian people's attachment to the values of peace and stability," according to Reuters.
The government hailed a “higher than expected” voter turnout despite boycott fears, Agence France Presse reported.
The Interior Ministry said 43 percent of voters cast a ballot in the first elections since the Arab Spring hit the region. This was up from a record low of 35 percent at the last elections in 2007.
More from GlobalPost: Egypt's presidential hopefuls hold country's first TV debate
The FLN party of President Abdelaziz Bouteflika, who is aged 75, along with its two government allies, said earlier that it was confident of a win.
A total of 500 election monitors were dispatched to oversee the vote, with AFP reporting that Algeria's electoral commission received more than 150 complaints.
Meanwhile, Human Rights Watch accused Algerian authorities of using arrests to keep people from demonstrating ahead of the vote in the capital Algiers.
More from GlobalPost: Yandex, Russia's Google, takes off
The NGO said security forces detained protesters, including at least one election candidate, and prevented people from entering the capital.