Algerian police have clashed with anti-government protestors ahead of elections in the country which are likely to see President Abdelaziz Bouteflika win a fourth term in office.

The demonstrators tried a sit-in protests in downtown Algiers before they were dragged away by uniformed officers.

Anti-government protests are rare in Algeria where the ruling FLN party and the army have mostly influenced the North African state's politics since independence from France in 1962. Several opposition parties have joined forces to call for a boycott against an election which they say unfairly favours the FLN.

Bouteflika, seen here casting his ballot by wheelchair, has been president since 1999, but did not campaign after suffering a stroke last year.

Demonstrations in Algiers are still banned since a protest in 2001 in which several people were killed in clashes.