Algerian ex-prime minister Benflis to run for presidency

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ALGIERS, Algeria (AP) — Algerian ex-Prime Minister Ali Benflis has announced he will run for president in next year’s election.

The 74-year-old Benflis was President Abdelaziz Bouteflika’s campaign director in 1999 and was named prime minister in 2000. He quit as prime minister in 2003 and unsuccessfully challenged Bouteflika in 2004 and again in 2014.

Benflis formed his own party in 2015, Talaie El Houriat, Arabic for Vanguard of Freedoms.

The 82-year-old Bouteflika, who has yet to say whether he will seek a fifth term, has announced the election for April 18.

Benflis became the second official candidate after Ret. Gen. Ali Ghediri said Saturday he would run for president. Other potential candidates have until March 4 to register with the constitutional court.

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