A group of 38 human rights organisations, including over ten from Algeria, has launched the #NotACrime online campaign to call attention to the shrinking civic space in the country.
The organisations, in a statement, said the online campaign is designed to call on Algerian authorities to stop their ‘assault on civic space’ and fundamental freedoms.
It is understood that the online campaign will run between 19 and 28 May, 2022, on all 38 organisations’ social media accounts.
The 38 human rights entities, including the Action for Change and Democracy in Algeria (ACDA), Algerian League for the Defence of Human Rights (LADDH), Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies (CIHRS) and Free Algeria, urged all relevant parties to demand an end to the criminalisation of the exercise of fundamental freedoms in the country.
Others from Algeria include: Autonomous General Confederation of Workers in Algeria;
Autonomous National Union of Electricity and Gas Workers; Autonomous National Union of Public Administration Staff; Collective Action-Detainees; Collective of the Families of the Disappeared in Algeria; Justitia Centre for Legal Protection of Human Rights in Algeria; Riposte Internationale; Shoaa for Human Rights; Tharwa N’Fadhma N’Soumer; and Trade Union Confederation of Productive Forces.
‘The campaign calls on Algerian authorities to end their repression of human rights immediately and unconditionally release those detained solely for the peaceful exercise of their human rights and allow everyone to freely enjoy their rights’, the statement read.
‘Those suspected of responsibility for grave human rights violations should be brought to justice in fair trials, and the authorities should provide access to justice and effective remedies for victims’.
The rights organisations also noted that the #NotACrime campaign will continue until the anniversary of the death of Kamel Eddine Fekhar, a human rights defender who died in detention on 28 May, 2019, after a 50-day hunger strike to protest his imprisonment for expressing views critical of the government.
Data from Amnesty International (AI), one of the 38 organisations, suggests that Algerian authorities have used repressive laws to prosecute dozens of peaceful protesters under charges like ‘harming national unity’, ‘harming national interest’, ‘incitement to unarmed gathering’, ‘offending public officials’, and ‘offending the President’.
Development Diaries had reported in February 2022 that the number of prisoners of conscience in the North African country had reached a new record 340.
Freedom House also rated Algeria ‘not free’ in its 2022 Freedom in the World report of political rights and civil liberties, with the country earning 32 points out of a possible 100.
Source: Amnesty International
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