Algeria's Bouteflika in French hospital, reason unclear

November 14, 2014 22:20
1 minute read.

LYON, France - Algerian President Abdelaziz Bouteflika, who suffered a stroke last year, was hospitalized in the Alpine city of Grenoble in France on Thursday, French police and government sources said.

"He was taken into care at Grenoble mutualist clinic yesterday," the source told Reuters on Friday, although he did not have details on why Bouteflika had been hospitalized.

A spokesman for the Algerian government was not immediately available for an official comment. But Amar Saadani, head of Bouteflika's ruling FLN party, when asked whether the president was in France for treatment, told Reuters: "It is not true."

Algeria's Echorouk TV, seen as close to the government, cited a presidential source as saying Bouteflika was at home and his health normal.

Two French government sources said he had arrived on Thursday. One said the Algerian leader appeared to be in France for a routine check-up.

A veteran of Algeria's war of independence against France which ended with independence in 1962, Bouteflika, 77, suffered a stroke in early 2013, forcing him to be rushed to a French hospital. He has since returned to France for several check-ups.

Under Bouteflika, the OPEC producer has become a partner in Washington's campaign against al-Qaida-linked militants in the Maghreb and a supplier of about a fifth of Europe's gas imports.

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