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Take Action for Rafik Belamrania

الحالة: محكوم


M. Tayeb Louh
Ministre de la Justice
8 place Bir Hakem
16000 el-Biar


+213 21 9217 01

On 15 November 2017, human rights defender Rafik Belamrania was sentenced to five years' imprisonment and a 100,000 Algerian Dinar (approximately €750) financial penalty under the false charge of “sympathising with terrorism”.

Rafik Belamrania is a founding member of Mish'al (Torch) Association for the Children of the Forcibly Disappeared in Algeria. The organisation was created in 2009 with the aim of supporting the parents of victims in their ongoing struggle for truth and justice concerning 20,000 enforced disappearances committed by the Algerian security forces between 1992 and 1999. As part of his work, Rafik Belamrania monitors and documents cases of enforced disappearances and shares reports about serious violations of human rights with UN mechanisms and international organisations. He also works organising peaceful protests and networking with political parties and prominent figures in society. Rafik Belamrania was active on social media prior to his arrest, where he distributed advocacy material related to his work.

On 15 November 2017, Rafik Belamrania was sentenced to five years' imprisonment and a 100,000 Algerian Dinar financial penalty, after being convicted of “sympathising with terrorism”. On 22 February 2017, the Court of Jijel in Algeria ordered the detention of Rafik Belamrania under false charges in relation to a Facebook post that they claimed “excused terrorism”. The regime in Algeria has regularly used the charge of “sympathising with terrorism” as a means to target peaceful activists over the past couple of years.

Prosecutors also cited Rafik Belamrania’s possession of publications hostile to the Algerian regime, photos of rallies with human rights organizations, and photos of disappeared individuals as evidence of guilt. Other documents seized from the defender’s residence were similarly cited in his criminal prosecution including brochures of the National Coordination of Families of the Disappeared and seven testimonies relating to some of the missing persons.

I condemn the arrest, sentencing, and imprisonment of Rafik Belamrania and believe these to be solely motivated by the human rights defender's peaceful and legitimate work in the defence of human rights in Algeria.

I urge the authorities in Algeria to:

1. Immediately and unconditionally release Rafik Belamrania, and drop all charges against him;

2. Ensure that the treatment of Rafik Belamrania, while in detention, adheres to the conditions set out in the ‘Body of Principles for the Protection of All Persons under Any Form of Detention or Imprisonment', adopted by UN General Assembly resolution 43/173 of 9 December 1988;

3. Guarantee in all circumstances that all human rights defenders in Algeria are able to carry out their legitimate human rights activities without fear of reprisals and free of all restrictions.