The turbulent country of Algeria is due to hold parliamentary elections this year in the month of May as announced by government authorities after promises of reform many have been calling for were promised to be upheld. Since 2010, Algeria has remained largely unscathed by neighboring Tunisia’s “Jasmine Revolution” and North Africa’s/the Middle East’s “Arab Spring”.
However, many parts of Algeria before and after the Jasmine Revolution have seen to a sharp spike in riots, public unrest and a discrete “return” of the Salafist Jihadists or other radicals.
Damages as a result of the ongoing unrest and sporadic acts of violence have amounted to over 7 billion U.S. dollars worth.
Algeria’s President Abdelaziz Bouteflika succumbed to pressure as he promised to undertake reforms at press conferences.
Other members of the government including Prime Minister Ahmed Ouyahia are of similar mind. The government has been criticized by many in the country as “non-transparent”, weak and corrupt.
Increasing food prices and other issues have only served to stimulate the unhappiness in the country while radical Muslims have successfully targeted hundreds of bars and stores that sold alcoholic beverages as a sort of scapegoat plan to garner political support for radicals.
In response to the food shortages, low harvest, the increasing food and commodity prices, the Algerian government has been steadily importing 40% more wheat for the past 11 months totaling up to 6.35 million metric tons of wheat.
The Algerian government has been hostile to such radical elements and Islamic insurgents for decades.
The conflict between the government and the Salafist Jihadists, who advocate the use of violence in Islam, has produced more than 200,000 deaths since the early 1990′s.