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Friday, December 9, 2022

Algeria: Release members of Ahmadi religious minority

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Algerian authorities should instantly and unconditionally launch, and drop all fees in opposition to, three members of the Ahmadi Faith of Peace and Mild, who had been arrested earlier this week solely for peacefully exercising their proper to freedom of faith, stated Amnesty Worldwide immediately.

The authorities should additionally drop all fees in opposition to 21 different members of the group who’re at the moment launched pending investigation.

On 6 June 2022, the First Occasion Tribunal in Bejaia charged the 24 males who determine as members of the Ahmadi non secular group with ‘participation in an unauthorized group’ and ‘denigrating Islam’, below Article 46 of the Legislation on Associations and Article 144 bis 2 of the Algerian Penal Code, respectively. The decide ordered the speedy detention of three members and launched the others pending additional investigation. Their lawyer appealed this resolution on 8 June.

“The Algerian authorities have authorized obligations to respect, defend, promote and fulfil the suitable to freedom of faith of everybody within the nation which incorporates these with non secular beliefs which might be completely different to the bulk. It’s outrageous {that a} group of individuals discover themselves behind bars merely for practising their religion or for his or her beliefs,” stated Amna Guellali, Amnesty Worldwide’s Deputy Director for the Center East and North Africa.

“Algerian authorities should instantly and unconditionally launch the three detained males and drop all fees in opposition to them and the 21 different members of the Ahmadi Faith of Peace and Mild.”

Redouane Foufa, the coordinator of the group of non secular members in Bejaia, advised Amnesty Worldwide earlier than his arrest that the Algerian authorities have been intimidating and harassing the group in Bejaia since April 2022. They interrogated them about their non secular beliefs and confiscated their passports, telephones and laptops on 2 April. They returned their passports on 7 June however stored their digital units.

On 5 June, police in Bejaia held the 24 members of the group for 13 Hours. They interrogated the adults and took their images and fingerprints.

In line with Nadia Saliba, a gaggle member and spouse of detainee Khireddine Ahman, one officer stated they’re traitors of Islam and don’t deserve rights as residents. The members of the group had been advised they would seem in courtroom the following morning and that their kids had been prohibited from attending Algerian faculties till subsequent yr.

On 6 June, the group of 24 spent 14 hours in courtroom earlier than three of them — Redouane Foufa, the coordinator of the motion in Bejaia, and two different members, Khireddine Ahman and Cherif Mohamed Ali — had been charged and despatched to Bejaia’s Oued Ghir jail.

The Ahmadi Faith of Peace and Mild was established in 1993. It follows the teachings of Imam Mahdi and believes in Imam Ahmed al-Hassan as its divine information. There are at the moment an estimated 70 members in Algeria.

“It’s outrageous {that a} group of individuals discover themselves behind bars merely for practising their religion or for his or her beliefs.” Mentioned Amna Guellali, Amnesty Worldwide

In line with Hadil El Khouly, a spokesperson for the Ahmadi Faith of Peace and Mild, the members of the group in Bejaia have been interrogated by police a complete of ten occasions over the previous three months.

In an interview with Amnesty Worldwide earlier than his arrest, Redouane Foufa stated that round 30 troopers had beforehand searched the home he shares with the members of the group and seized paperwork resembling ID playing cards and passports, in addition to telephones and laptops.

Youssra Bezai, one other member of the non secular minority group, advised Amnesty Worldwide: “We had been dwelling peacefully in our house. We by no means tried to take our beliefs outdoors. It’s them who got here to us and violated our privateness and our rights.”

Distributed by APO Group on behalf of Amnesty Worldwide.

This Press Launch has been issued by APO. The content material isn’t monitored by the editorial group of African Enterprise and never of the content material has been checked or validated by our editorial groups, proof readers or reality checkers. The issuer is solely accountable for the content material of this announcement.

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