Bouteflika to visit Geneva for ‘Medical Checks’

Thursday, 21 February, 2019 - 18:45
Asharq Al-Awsat

Algerian President Abdelaziz Bouteflika will travel to Switzerland on Sunday for “routine medical checks,” his office said in a statement without elaborating.

The 81-year-old will have a "short" stay in Geneva, it said in a statement carried by the government APS news agency.

Bouteflika has announced that he will run for a fifth term in office in the presidential election set for April 18. Observers expect him to win despite serious questions over his fitness for office after a 2013 stroke that left him largely infirm.

Bouteflika has been seen in public only a few times a year during his entire fourth term. He last appeared in public on November 1 and no longer delivers public speeches.

He did however appear on television on Thursday, alongside other senior officials attending the swearing-in of the new president of the Constitutional Council Tayeb Belaiz.

Bouteflika regularly visits hospitals overseas, most recently spending five days in Switzerland in August for unspecified tests.

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