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UGTA calls on members to vote in Algeria’s Presidential Referendum

ICFTU OnLine, 164/990910/DD, 10 September 1999

Brussels September 10 1999 (ICFTU OnLine): The UGTA, the Algerian trade union centre, and an ICFTU affiliate has appealed to its members to vote yes in the National Presidential Referendum to be held on September 16.

Following his election as the new President, Abdelaziz Bouteflika called for a Referendum which, among other elements, will authorise the government to offer amnesty to Islamic fundamentalists if they give up their arms. The UGTA is convinced that moves towards peace such as this will help the country to return to greater social harmony, which will lead to economic and social reconstruction, in which it has an important role to play.

In the lead-up to the Presidential election the UGTA floated a platform of suggestions for the country’s development, a number of which were included in the electoral programme of Abdelaziz Bouteflika.

The UGTA is very anxious that the country, which has been dogged by terrible violence in which many trade unionists died, for the last five years, moves into a new phase of social stability. Trade unionists were often one of the targets of Islamic fundamentalist terror because of their role in established civil society.