Algeria to probe video of police beating protesters

A demonstrator wearing a mask gestures during a protest demanding the removal of the ruling elite in Algiers, Algeria July 5, 2019. The day marking the country's independence day. (Reuters)
Updated 07 July 2019

Algeria to probe video of police beating protesters

ALGIERS: Algerian police said Sunday they had opened an investigation after a video circulated online appeared to show protesters being beaten by security forces.
Thousands of people took to the streets of the capital Algiers on Friday, the latest in weeks of rallies against the ruling class amid an ongoing political crisis in the country.
In a video widely circulated on social media, two men are seen on the ground being beaten by police officers with batons.
Police chief Abdelkader Kara Bouhadba ordered a probe into the footage “showing clashes with police forces probably during the protest on Friday,” the Directorate General for National Security (DGSN) said in a statement.
The DGSN stressed “the need to investigate... to determine liability and take the measures required by law,” in a message on its Facebook page.
Scuffles broke out at the end of the Algiers rally when police officers grabbed the Berber flag — banned from protests — from demonstrators’ hands and removed it from streetlights.
There was a major police presence at Friday’s rally as demonstrators continued their push for a political overhaul following ailing leader Abdelaziz Bouteflika quitting in April in the face of mass demonstrations.
Interim president Abdelkader Bensalah has called for a national dialogue to pave the way for elections, but demonstrators want top figures from Bouteflika’s era to step aside before polls are held.


Israel’s Netanyahu says he is giving up on trying to form new government

Updated 18 min 20 sec ago

Israel’s Netanyahu says he is giving up on trying to form new government

JERUSALEM: Israel’s president says Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has ended his quest to form a new coalition — a step that pushes the country into new political uncertainty.
Netanyahu fell short of securing a 61-seat parliamentary majority in last month’s national election. But President Reuven Rivlin gave Netanyahu the first opportunity to form a government because he had more support, 55 seats, than any other candidate.
Netanyahu had hoped to form a broad “unity” government with his chief rival, former military chief Benny Gantz. But late Monday, Netanyahu announced he came up short.
Rivlin says he will now give Gantz a chance to form a government, though Gantz does not appear to have enough support either.
If Gantz fails, Israel could hold its third election in less than one year.