Thousands of students demonstrate in Algiers

AFP , Tuesday 12 Apr 2011

Students demonstrate against poverty and deteriorating educational services

Between 2,000 and 3,000 students held a march Tuesday in central Algiers in defiance of a government ban on demonstrations in the Algerian capital.

The students gathered in front of the central post office and ran up against several cordons of police deployed in downtown Algiers from the early hours of the morning, journalists at the scene reported.

The students shouted slogans such as "There's been enough of the ministry, enough poverty." They also called on Superior Education Minister Rachid Harroubia to resign.

The students were protesting in particular about a new system of handing out diplomas which they dislike, as well as what they see as bad management of the university.

The demonstrators, who came from several districts of the country, did not succeed in reaching the government buildings, where the prime minister was, on account of a strong police presence in all the side streets.

They then headed for the president's residence, overlooking the city, but were again stopped by police.

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