20 June 2012

Algeria Should Immediately Cease the Prosecution of Human Rights Activists

press release

ANHRI denounced the detention and trial of four human rights activists in Algeria on charges of assembly and peaceful condemnation for the imprisonment of another activist; Abdel-qader Kharba and putting him into trial. ANHRI demands the immediate release of human rights activists and to stop their trials.

"Bab El-Wad" court in the Algerian capital, decided in yesterday session 19/6/2012 to postpone the trial of the four activists to a session on September 27.

"This trial is a flagrant violation of freedom of peaceful assembly, freedom of association and freedom to demonstrate. It aim sto crack down on civil society in Algeria," said ANHRI.

The four activists are :

Yassin Zayed: an activist within the Algerian League for the Defense of Rights

Abdou Ben Judy: an activist in the movement of Independent Youth for the Change

Osman Awamr: a member in the Network for defending the freedoms and dignity.

Likhdar Bouzini: member in the national syndicate of users of public administration (Snabab).

The four activists were called to stand before Bab-elwad court for demanding in a peacefum manner the release of Abdel-kader kharba, who is a member in the national commission for the unemployed rights (CNDDC), and the Algerian League for the Defense of Human Rights (LADDH) after his arrest on April 19 for his contribution in a peaceful sit-in in solidarity with courts clerks, demanding better working conditions in the field of justice. On may 3, Kharba was sentenced to a one suspended year in prison and a fine of 20 thousand dinars (200 euros).

These violations come shortly after the the issuance of the legislative amendments which gave an opportunity for the Algerian government to tighten its grip on civil society especially the political sphere in general.

In Jan 2012, the Algerian parliament approved amendments to the associations Act that include limitations to the right to organize, which represent a significant decline of the political reform claimed by the president Bouteflika.

Recently, Algeria has been launching a vicious campaign of judicial and administrative harassment against activists and human rights activists, including :

Haji Eissa Abbass and Mohammed Albwimmer: representative of the National Committee to defend the rights of the unemployed in Laghouat state.

Malika Flel : head of the national committee for making pre-hiring contracts and the social network.

Al-Taher bel-abbass : the spokesman for the national coordination for the Defense of the rights of the unemployed

" The human rights activists who are now on trial, were followed on the basis of Article 100 of the Penal Code," saied The Algerian League for the Defense of Human Rights, to which Ziad Yassin belongs.

"The trial of human rights activists intended to disrupt their work that exposed Bouteflika system's violations and highlighted their crimes." said ANHRI that added "The Algerian system proves day by day that it didn't learn the Arab Spring revolutions lessons and they will pay for it if they didn't change their policy."

ANHRI demands the immediate end of clamping down on peaceful sit-ins and human rights activists and to implement Algeria's pledges concerning the freedoms and fundamental rights that should be implemented under the ratification of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.

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