Algeria

Map Algeria
Maps copyright Hammond World Atlas Corp.

Flag of Algeria

Facts

Background: After more than a century of rule by France, Algerians fought through much of the 1950s to achieve independence in 1962. Algeria's primary political party, the National Liberation Front (FLN), was established in 1954 as part of the struggle for independence and has largely dominated politics since. The Government of Algeria in 1988 instituted a multi-party system in response to public unrest, but the surprising first round success of the Islamic Salvation Front (FIS) in the December 1991 balloting spurred the Algerian army to intervene and postpone the second round of elections to prevent what the secular elite feared would be an extremist-led government from assuming power. The army began a crackdown on the FIS that spurred FIS supporters to begin attacking government targets, and fighting escalated into an insurgency, which saw intense violence between 1992-98 resulting in over 100,000 deaths - many attributed to indiscriminate massacres of villagers by extremists. The government gained the upper hand by the late-1990s, and FIS's armed wing, the Islamic Salvation Army, disbanded in January 2000. Abdelaziz BOUTEFLIKA, with the backing of the military, won the presidency in 1999 in an election widely viewed as fraudulent, was reelected to a second term in 2004, and overwhelmingly won a third term in 2009 after the government amended the constitution in 2008 to remove presidential term limits. Longstanding problems continue to face BOUTEFLIKA, including large-scale unemployment, a shortage of housing, unreliable electrical and water supplies, government inefficiencies and corruption, and the continuing activities of extremist militants. The Salafist Group for Preaching and Combat (GSPC) in 2006 merged with al-Qai'da to form al-Qai'da in the Lands of the Islamic Maghreb, which has launched an ongoing series of kidnappings and bombings targeting the Algerian Government and Western interests.
Location: Northern Africa, bordering the Mediterranean Sea, between Morocco and Tunisia
Area land: 2,381,741 sq km
Area water: 0 sq km
Coastline: 998 km
Country name conventional long form: People's Democratic Republic of Algeria
Country name conventional short form: Algeria
Country name former: People's Democratic Republic of Algeria
Population: 34,994,937 (July 2011 est.)
Age structure: 0-14 years: 24.2% (male 4,319,295/female 4,144,863); 15-64 years: 70.6% (male 12,455,378/female 12,242,604); 65 years and over: 5.2% (male 845,116/female 987,681) (2011 est.);
Population growth rate: 1.173% (2011 est.)
Birth rate: 16.69 births/1,000 population (2011 est.)
Death rate: 4.69 deaths/1,000 population (July 2011 est.)
Net migration rate: -0.27 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2011 est.)
Sex ratio: at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female; under 15 years: 1.04 male(s)/female; 15-64 years: 1.02 male(s)/female; 65 years and over: 0.86 male(s)/female; total population: 1.01 male(s)/female (2011 est.);
Infant mortality rate: total: 25.81 deaths/1,000 live births; male: 28.8 deaths/1,000 live births; female: 22.67 deaths/1,000 live births (2011 est.);
Life expectancy at birth: total population: 74.5 years; male: 72.78 years; female: 76.31 years (2011 est.);
Total fertility rate: 1.75 children born/woman (2011 est.);
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 0.1%; 0.1% note - no country specific models provided (2009 est.);
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 18,000 (2009 est.);
HIV/AIDS - deaths: fewer than 1,000 (2009 est.);
Nationality: noun: Algerian(s); adjective: Algerian;
Ethnic groups: Arab-Berber 99%, European less than 1%;

note: almost all Algerians are Berber in origin, not Arab; the minority who identify themselves as Berber live mostly in the mountainous region of Kabylie east of Algiers; the Berbers are also Muslim but identify with their Berber rather than Arab cultural heritage; Berbers have long agitated, sometimes violently, for autonomy; the government is unlikely to grant autonomy but has offered to begin sponsoring teaching Berber language in schools

Religions: Sunni Muslim (state religion) 99%, Christian and Jewish 1%;
Languages: Arabic (official), French, Berber dialects;
Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write; total population: 69.9%; male: 79.6%; female: 60.1% (2002 est.);
GDP (purchasing power parity): $254.7 billion (2010 est.); $244.6 billion (2009 est.); $239.4 billion (2008 est.);
note: data are in 2010 US dollars

GDP (official exchange rate): $159 billion (2010 est.);
GDP - real growth rate: 4.1% (2010 est.); 2.2% (2009 est.); 2.8% (2008 est.);
GDP - per capita (PPP): $7,400 (2010 est.); $7,200 (2009 est.); $7,100 (2008 est.);
note: data are in 2010 US dollars

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 8.3%; industry: 61.5%; services: 30.2% (2010 est.);
Population below poverty line: 23% (2006 est.);
Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: 2.8%; highest 10%: 26.8% (1995);
Labor force: 9.877 million (2010 est.);
Labor force - by occupation: agriculture: 14%; industry: 13.4%; construction and public works: 10%; trade: 14.6%; government: 32%; other: 16% (2003 est.);
Unemployment rate: 9.9% (2010 est.); 10.2% (2009 est.);
Budget: revenues: $66.48 billion; expenditures: $85.57 billion (2010 est.);
Industries: petroleum, natural gas, light industries, mining, electrical, petrochemical, food processing;
Industrial production growth rate: 4.8% (2010 est.);
Electricity - production: 34.98 billion kWh (2007 est.);
Electricity - consumption: 28.34 billion kWh (2007 est.);
Electricity - exports: 273 million kWh (2007 est.);
Electricity - imports: 279 million kWh (2007 est.);

Statistics: CIA World Factbook.

Press

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Displaying 8 to 9 of 9 items.

L'Expression

(French-language), Algiers
http://www.lexpressiondz.com

Liberté

(French-language), Algiers
http://www.liberte-algerie.com/

Algeria in the News

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Displaying 9 to 12 of 12 items.

Israel Trip Wire

The recent visit by a group of Algerian journalists and academics to Israel triggered controversy in the Algerian press and brought accusations of treason from President Abdelaziz Bouteflika.

Militant’s Murder

Evidence that Islamic Salvation Front (FIS) leader Abdel Kader Hachani had complained to Algerian authorities about harassment and surveillance by security agents in the weeks leading up to his assassination has heightened suspicion that shadowy military and security factions were behind his murder, reports the Saudi-owned Al-Hayat of London (Nov. 24).

Promises to Keep

Since taking office in April, President Abdelaziz Bou-teflika has boosted his popularity through a platform of national reconciliation and promises to tackle corruption. But observers suggest that the Algerian leader finds himself at odds with factions in the country’s powerful military.

A Lost War

Until recently, France's Algerian war of the late 1950s and early 1960s did not officially exist, reports Blandine Grosjean in Paris's leftist Liberation.

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