Algeria: January 2, 2005

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Algeria earned 31 billion dollars from oil and gas exports in 2004, and this was 96 percent of export earnings. The Algerian people are angry about where much of that money went. Corruption in the government is no secret, and bureaucrats would rather hire more riot police to put down demonstrations, than auditors and investigators to find and prosecute civil servants who steal money. Over a decade of violence by Islamic radicals was partly caused by anger against the corruption. The Islamic radicals brought widespread terror and murder, not honest administration, and have been discredited. But now that the Islamic radical threat is largely gone, people are concentrating on economic issues, and the corrupt government that they see as preventing prosperity.

 

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