Police detain a protester during a demonstration against Algerian President Abdulaziz Bouteflika's decision to run for a fourth term, in Algiers March 6, 2014. (REUTERS/Ramzi Boudina)
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Bouteflika registered Monday at the Constitutional Council 24 hours before the deadline, appearing briefly on state television to speak in public for the first time in months.Much of this reflected efforts by Bouteflika's faction to neutralize Mediene's political influence before the president announced his candidacy for a fourth term, analysts say.Several intelligence generals have been sacked or transferred, while the president's allies hold key posts in the army and the Cabinet.In 2012, Bouteflika suggested time was over for his generation of leaders, but he has only consolidated his grip.Bouteflika's allies say he is a stabilizing figure in a region where Libya demonstrates the risks of chaos three years after NATO-backed rebels ended Moammar Gadhafi's 42-year rule.Sellal, 66, who as prime minister ran most day-to-day affairs when Bouteflika was ill, might be one contender for vice president.Campaigning starts on March 23, but Algerian voters don't know whether Bouteflika will become more visible to the public.
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