February 22 – March 01, 2021 | Algeria Press Review

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Photo: John S. on Flickr

March 01, 2021

Vaccination COVID-19 Algeria: Launch of online registrations

As part of the national vaccination campaign against COVID-19 and to ensure that the people to be vaccinated are “well organised”, the ministry has set up a digital platform, which includes the contact details of the candidate for vaccination, including address and telephone number.

The platform, open to the general public since yesterday Sunday, will allow people wishing to benefit from this vaccine among the targeted categories to register according to the region and the nearest establishment to obtain an appointment for both the first and second dose.

It will also make it possible, in a short time, to collect all the data related to the vaccination campaign, which will be studied, monitored and evaluated by the supervisory ministry. Here is the registration link: http://vac-covid19.sante.gov.dz:9580/rdvac/menu_ins/

For more information, please consult (in French) the following link.

Tebboune: “I went through a really difficult stage because of the coronavirus”.

In an interview with national media officials broadcast tonight on national television and radio stations, the head of state said he had gone through a difficult stage and he has healed thanks to divine protection. “I went through a really difficult stage because of the coronavirus,” he said.
President Tebboune denied rumours about his health. “I was torn, especially when I saw people who have neither religion nor morals, spreading rumours that I am not sick and that I was attacked …”, he lamented, saying in passing that 97% of these rumours come from outside “and you know where,” he said.

For more information, please consult (in French) the following link.

COVID-19: Partial confinement extended in 19 wilayas

“In application of the instructions of the President of the Republic, Mr Abdelmadjid Tebboune, Supreme Chief of the Armed Forces, Minister of National Defence, and at the end of consultations with the scientific committee for monitoring the evolution of the Coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19) and the health authority, the Prime Minister, Mr Abdelaziz Djerad, decided on the measures to be implemented under the mechanism for managing the health crisis linked to the Coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19).

These measures are still aimed at preserving the health of citizens and protecting them against any risk of the spread of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) and are supported by an approach based on prudence, progressiveness and flexibility. The aim of these measures is to renew the current protection and prevention system in the light of changes in the epidemiological situation and taking into account the establishment of the new wilayas.

These measures are as follows:

1. Partial confinement at home :

The measure of partial confinement at home shall be extended for a period of fifteen (15) days as follows:

  • The measure of partial confinement at home from twenty-two (22) hours until five (5) o’clock in the morning of the following day is applicable in the following nineteen (19) wilayas: Batna, Biskra, Blida, Bouira, Tebessa, Tlemcen, Tizi-Ouzou, Algiers, Jijel, Sidi Bel Abbes, Constantine, Mostaganem, M’sila, Oran, Boumerdes, El Tarf, Tissemsilt, Ain Temouchent and Relizane.
  • Not concerned wiht these confinement measures are the following 39 wilayas : Adrar, Chlef, Laghouat, Oum El Bouaghi, Bejaia, Béchar, Tamenghasset, Tiaret, Djelfa, Sétif, Saïda, Skikda, Annaba, Guelma, Médéa, Mascara, Ouargla, El Bayadh, Illizi, Bordj Bou Arréridj, Tindouf, El Oued, Khenchela, Souk Ahras, Tipaza, Mila, Ain Defla, Naâma, Ghardaia, Timimoun, Bordj Badji Mokhtar, Ouled Djellal, Beni Abbés, In Salah, In Guezzam, Touggourt, Djanet, El Meghaeir and El Meniaâ.

These containment measures are applicable from Tuesday, March 2, 2021. The walis may, after agreement of the competent authorities, take all measures required by the sanitary situation of each wilaya, in particular the introduction, modification or modulation of schedules, of the measure of partial or total targeted confinement at home of one or several communes, localities or districts experiencing outbreaks of contamination.

2- With regard to public gatherings and rallies :

The extension of the prohibition, throughout the national territory, of any type of gathering of persons and family reunification, in particular the celebration of marriages and circumcision and other events such as reunifications at cemetery level. The walis will ensure compliance with this prohibition and the application of regulatory sanctions against offenders as well as the owners of the places hosting these reunifications.

Finally, the Government reiterates its calls for caution for citizens, particularly in view of the current risk of circulation of new variants of COVID-19 throughout the world, and calls on the individual and collective responsibility of all to continue, with the same determination, the mobilisation and discipline that have, until now, made it possible to stabilise the epidemiological situation in our country.

Indeed, at a time when Algeria is working tirelessly to overcome this difficult ordeal and has succeeded in considerably reducing the spread of the Coronavirus epidemic (COVID-19), we must all continue to act in such a way as to avoid annihilating these efforts and to safeguard what has been achieved to date, thanks precisely to the discipline and sacrifices made by our citizens.

It will be a matter of avoiding, in all responsibility, situations of crowding and physical contact that favour the spread of this epidemic and to continue to scrupulously observe the recommended barrier measures, such as physical distancing, the compulsory wearing of masks and frequent hand washing. Finally, it will be a matter of avoiding the harsh ordeals endured by our medical and paramedical staff in particular, and all Algerians in general, in the difficult moments of the epidemic’s rebound, with all the negative consequences on the economic and social level”.

For more information, please consult (in French) the following link.

While the epidemic seemed to be under control one year after the first cases of COVID-19: The British variant changes the game

It has been a year to the day, 1 March 2020, since Algeria registered the first indigenous cases of COVID -19 after the first case, an Italian national working in Hassi Messaoud, appeared on 25 February 2020. …] The arrival of the British variant a year later risks complicating the situation.

For more information, please consult (in French) the following link.

February 28, 2021

President Tebboune orders preventive measures to be maintained

“The President of the Republic, Mr. Abdelmadjid Tebboune, Supreme Chief of the Armed Forces, Minister of National Defence has ordered, at the end of the periodic meeting of the Council of Ministers, the maintenance of preventive measures taken, in particular the closure of borders and airspace in view of the global health situation marked by the spread of variants of the new Coronavirus,” reads a statement from the Presidency of the Republic.

It also ordered “the broadening and strengthening of epidemiological investigations, particularly regarding cases of contamination by the (British) variant with the aim of greater prevention”.

Mr. Tebboune also insisted on “the continuation of the vaccination programme against COVID-19, considering the recommendations of experts and specialists in the choice of vaccines and their effectiveness against variants of the new Coronavirus and optimizing the use of the quantities available”, the press release emphasises.

For more information, please consult (in French) the following link.

February 26, 2021

UN calls on Algeria to release hirak detainees

The High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet “urged the government of Algeria to continue on the path of dialogue and to immediately release all those detained for their peaceful participation in the demonstrations”.

Speaking before the UN Human Rights Council, Bachellet welcomed the release of 35 prisoners of conscience, benefiting from the presidential pardon, decided by the Head of State, Abdelmadjid Tebboune during his speech to the Nation on 18 February.

For more information, please consult (in French) the following link.

Are the vaccines approved by Algeria effective against the new variants of COVID-19?

In a statement given to the Arabic-speaking site Ennahar, the virology expert assures, indeed, that the vaccines Pfizer, Moderna and Sputnik V all act against the new variants of COVID-19. According to Dr Yahia Mekki, the three vaccines are effective both when confronted with the “classic” strain of SARS-CoV2, but also with its “UK” and “South African” variants, which are suspected of being able to escape the antibodies.

As a reminder, Algeria recorded its first two cases of contamination with the British variant of the coronavirus. Both cases were detected last weekend by the Pasteur Institute of Algeria (IPA), on a nurse and a young man.

For more information, please consult (in French) the following link.

Algeria suspends all repatriation flights

Algeria is “bunkerising” itself further. All repatriation flights will be suspended between 1 and 31 March 2021, the authorities announced earlier this week. The evoked reason for this hardening is the implementation of “prevention and security measures to stem the COVID -19 pandemic and its new variants”. On 24 February, Algeria had more than 112,000 cases of contamination with 77,500 cured, against nearly 2,970 deaths.

For more information, please consult (in French) the following link.

Algeria receives 200,000 doses of vaccine from China, the UK variant of the coronavirus detected in the country

Algeria received, on Wednesday, 200,000 doses of Sinopharm vaccine against coronavirus, a donation from China, a long-time partner of Algiers, said Thursday, February 25, the official press agency APS. This delivery “comes to complete the fight against the pandemic,” said government spokesman and communication minister Ammar Belhimer, quoted by APS, upon the arrival of this shipment Wednesday evening at the military airport of Boufarik, west of Algiers. “This process will continue and there will be further deliveries of vaccines until the country’s needs are fully met before the end of the year,” Belhimer assured.

This delivery is the largest batch received by Algiers, which has received since the end of January two shipments of 50,000 doses of the Russian vaccine Sputnik V and another batch of 50,000 doses from the British-Swedish giant AstraZeneca. Algeria should receive a batch of 700,000 to 800,000 doses by the end of February within the framework of the UN Covax system, according to the health minister, Abderahmane Benbouzid.

For more information, please consult (in French) the following link.

Thousands of demonstrators in the streets to revive Hirak

Despite the ban on gatherings for health reasons, several processions were formed in the early afternoon in popular neighbourhoods, including Bab El Oued, to reach the city centre, according to testimonies collected by AFP. “It’s grandiose. It’s like the great Fridays of Hirak,” said one protester, referring to the weekly marches that were interrupted on 13 March 2020 because of the health crisis.

Police used truncheons and tear gas on a major artery in the capital when demonstrators forced a police roadblock to reach the Grande Poste, the emblematic venue for rallies of anti-regime demonstrators, according to a video published on the Interlignes website.

For more information, please consult (in French) the following link.

February 25, 2021

Two cases have been recorded in Algiers: The UK variant detected in Algeria

Not surprisingly, the UK variant of the Sars CoV-2 virus was detected last weekend by the Pasteur Institute of Algeria (IPA) in two people who tested positive for COVID -19 through RT/PCR tests. The detection was made after numerous sequencing of samples launched in the framework of the investigations and surveillance of the virus at the unit in Sidi Fredj, which has two sequencers.

For more information, please consult (in French) the following link.

February 24, 2021

Algeria abruptly closes its border with Tunisia

Some Algerians cross the Tunisian border every day to work. And it is also true of Tunisians going to Algeria. But on Tuesday evening, February 23rd, motorists were surprised: the Algerian authorities had just closed their border, explains Le Courrier de l’Atlas. According to the Maghreb information site, “concordant security and customs sources” claim that this unexpected Algerian decision is directly linked to the announcement that a new variant of COVID-19 may have been identified in Tunisia. “Two people have tested positive to a new variant of COVID-19 in the governorate of Tunis,” Health Director General Faycel Ben Salah said Monday at a press conference.

This “unexpected” and “unilateral” decision of Algiers is surprising, according to Le Courrier de l’Atlas, while the two countries enjoy excellent relations. Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune, the newspaper recalls, has promised his neighbour to give him several thousand vaccines against COVID-19. An announcement that was made “with great pomp” in mid-January, but has not yet been implemented.

For more information, please consult (in French) the following link.

Benbouzid announces receipt of new vaccine batches today

The Minister of Health, Population and Hospital Reform, Abderrahmane Benbouzid, said a plane loaded with a large quantity of the coronavirus vaccine will arrive in Algeria today. The minister added, during his speech on the sidelines of the reception of a donation from the Association of Algerian Muslim Ulemas, that another plane will land in Algeria at the end of the month, loaded with hundreds of thousands of vaccines.

For more information, please consult (in French) the following link.

Benbouzid salutes the Algerian community’s outpouring of solidarity abroad

Receiving members of the Association of Algerian Muslim Ulemas, which was the intermediary of the associations “Algériens solidaires” and “Secours islamique France” who donated 5,200 suitcases containing artificial respirators to the Ministry of Health, Mr Benbouzid praised “the adherence of civil society in Algeria and within the national community abroad to the efforts of the authorities in the fight against the COVID-19 epidemic”.

For more information, please consult (in French) the following link.

February 23, 2021

Psychological impact of COVID-19: early childhood not spared

“The impact of this pandemic on children is often underestimated, as it manifests itself in a different way from that of adults. In particular, because they do not have a verbal language sophisticated enough to express their discomfort. And, contrary to what one might think, even a child under the age of 3 can be impacted by his great capacity to feel the distress of adults, especially his parents, who transmit their anguish to him”, Pr Tabti tells APS.

While specifying that this transmission of stress is “through their bodies and through the change in attitudes” of the elders towards the children, he adds that the older of the latter “indirectly express their anguish through nightmares, night terrors, sleepwalking and, sometimes, regressive phenomena such as the return of enuresis”.

For more information, please consult (in French) the following link.

Progressive return of visitors to the Kasbah of Algiers

After several months of interruption, the guided tours of the Kasbah of Algiers, the inhabited historic centre classified as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1992, have gradually resumed for several months now, breathing new life into the streets of the city, despite the absence of foreign visitors.

For more information, please consult (in French) the following link.

February 22, 2021

Why did Tebboune retouch the government team?

If this ministerial reshuffle is considered cosmetic, it will certainly be seen as Tebboune‘s will to take back the business in hand after a hospitalisation and convalescence which lasted more than three months. The outcome of the legislative elections will be decisive for the future of the government of Abdelaziz Djerad. In front of his opposition interlocutors, whom he received at length in audience, the president suggested that the maintenance or departure of his executive will be decided depending on the results of the election and the balance of power in the new National Assembly.

Already, the wager of holding these elections within six months seems complicated to meet. The massive abstention recorded during the referendum of 1 November 2020 on the new Constitution is a disavowal of the presidential initiative as much as it underlines the distrust of voters with regard to electoral events. The management of the COVID-19 crisis and its social consequences will weigh heavily on the future electoral campaign as well as on the rate of participation.

For more information, please consult (in French) the following link.