Algerian forces block protest by doctors, students

Algerian forces block protest by doctors, students AFP – Striking doctors and health care students demonstrate in Algiers. Algerian security forces blocked the …

ALGIERS (AFP) – Algerian security forces blocked a demonstration in Algiers by some 1,500 striking doctors and students of health care on Wednesday, in the latest clampdown on protests in the north African country.

The protesters, dressed in the white jackets of health workers, had gathered on Wednesday morning at the Mustapha Bacha hospital, the largest in the Algerian capital.

However, they were blocked from leaving the hospital and marching towards the parliament or presidency by security forces, equipped with anti-riot gear and armoured vehicles.

The protesters shouted demands to respect their professions, especially after new government rules stating that students in pharmacy and dentistry would no longer be designated "doctors" when they complete their studies.

The "degrading" move will affect their salary scale, they said.

"The most important thing is not what we're called but our grade in the public salary scale which is currently closer to paramedics than doctors," said Achraf, one student spokesman who gave only his first name.

As for the doctors in various medical specialties who are on strike, their demands include a salary increase and an end to compulsory civil service, which requires them to work for two to four years in remote areas of the country after finishing their studies.

Algeria's Health Minister Djamel Ould Abbes held talks with representatives of the different health sectors on Tuesday and reportedly made verbal promises of salary increases up to 70 percent and revision of health statutes.

Algeria has been shaken in recent months by protests at all levels of society and with strikes by students, doctors and auxiliary police against the cost of living and calling for reforms.

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5 Comments

  • 0 users liked this comment Please sign in to rate this comment up. Please sign in to rate this comment down. 2 users disliked this comment
    . Sat Mar 26, 2011 06:45 am PDT Report Abuse
    70. O ye who believe! Fear Allah, and (always) say a word directed to the Right:

    71. That He may make your conduct whole and sound and forgive you your sins: He that obeys Allah and His Messenger, has already attained the highest achievement.

    72. We did indeed offer the Trust to the Heavens and the Earth and the Mountains; but they refused to undertake it, being afraid thereof: but man undertook it;- He was indeed unjust and foolish;-

    73. (With the result) that Allah has to punish the Hypocrites, men and women, and the Unbelievers, men and women, and Allah turns in Mercy to the Believers, men and women: for Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.
  • 0 users liked this comment Please sign in to rate this comment up. Please sign in to rate this comment down. 0 users disliked this comment
    Hans Delbruck Wed May 11, 2011 11:48 am PDT Report Abuse
    Good, now they will start the chaos and mayhem, and flee to Europe, when the government troops open fire at them, and the situation gets out of control. Typical Muzzie trouble maker turds.
  • 0 users liked this comment Please sign in to rate this comment up. Please sign in to rate this comment down. 0 users disliked this comment
    mohamed Sun Apr 24, 2011 04:45 am PDT Report Abuse
    Algeria needs and wants political and economical reform what soever . the military regime is using and denigrating citizens . The last crime of the regime was the assassination of the teacher who opposed the regime .
  • 0 users liked this comment Please sign in to rate this comment up. Please sign in to rate this comment down. 0 users disliked this comment
    FennectiqueDZ Sat Apr 23, 2011 12:50 pm PDT Report Abuse
    Unlike what the report suggests, Algerians have been protesting against injustices long before the recent advent of those of their North African neighbors. Strikes have been held against unfair wages for many, many years as well.

    What the western press does not seem to understand is that Algeria's history is very much different than those of its neighbors and therefore responses to difficulties are and must be different.

    What is not mentioned in the article is that, despite the lifting of the 19-year Emergency State for the country, a ban against gathering in the streets of Algiers is still very much in effect and enforced. It is doubtful that 2-3,000 people would have been gathered in any place in Algiers because the police force would nver have allowed even a tiny fraction of that amount to join together. No doubt there was a vast contigent of police/para-military present long before the light of dawn broke over the city this morning-perhaps as many as 50 (or more) police to one civilian. This in itself shows the insecurity of the government with regards to the people it is supposed to protect and defend.

    The saddest thing is that 2012 will mark the 50th anniversary of Algeria's independence from her French colonizers, but despite a constitution which initially gave all Algerians freedom and democracy and despite the deaths of those who so valiantly foght for Algeria's sovereinty and liberty, Algerians who live in their country are probably less free today than they were in 1961, before Insependence was acheive, in part because the words of the original intention of constitution were lost and altered as time passed, and more recently were amended without the consent of the people..
  • 0 users liked this comment Please sign in to rate this comment up. Please sign in to rate this comment down. 0 users disliked this comment
    keith Sat Apr 23, 2011 10:51 am PDT Report Abuse
    Truncheon ------ like a police batton ......... sounds like something worse

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