ALGERIA: A UN Special Rapporteur meets members of Ahmadi Religion of Peace and Light
In August, CAP/ Liberté de conscience and Human Rights Without Frontiers had jointly sent a documented report to the situation of that Muslim new religious movement and asked him to meet their members. He did!
Ahmadi Religion of Peace and Light (24.09.2023) – Members of the Ahmadi Religion of Peace and Light in Algeria met today with the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Association and Peaceful Assembly, Clément Nyaletsossi Voule, during his official visit to Algeria from 16 to 26 September 2023.
The Special Rapporteur who is conducting the visit in order to assess Algeria’s compliance with the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and of association was keen on meeting with persecuted religious minorities in Algeria to learn about the challenges they face in exercising their right to freedom of religion and freedom of association. On the 6th of June 2022, 18 members of the Ahmadi Religion of Peace and Light in Algeria were charged with “participating in an unauthorized group” and “denigrating Islam”. On the 20th of September 2022, the Court of Bejaia sentenced Redouane Foufa, Khireddine Ahman, and Cherif Mohamed Ali to one year in prison and the rest of the group to six months in prison, with fines. After Amnesty International’s public campaign on the case, the sentence was overturned by the High Court of Bejaia. Despite this, a religious decree declaring the group to be heretics was still in effect and the court outlawed any further gathering of the group.
During today’s visit, members of the faith in Algeria spoke about the denial of their right to proclaim their faith and the crackdown by Algerian authorities against them, amid imminent threats to their lives and safety, after the authorities declared them to be apostates who are outside of Islam. They have reiterated their demand to practice their faith freely and to safely proclaim their belief in the Riser of the Family of Mohammed Aba Al-Sadiq Abdullah Hashem, in full protection of their right to life.
CAP/ Liberté de Conscience and Human Rights Without Frontiers, two NGOs active in Brussels, had addressed a report to the UN Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Peaceful Assembly and Association before his fact-finding mission in Algeria detailing the persistent religious persecution against members of the faith in Algeria. The report can be read HERE.
The Ahmadi Religion of Peace and Light would like to thank CAP/ Liberté de Conscience, Human Rights Without Frontiers and Hadil El-Khouly for their efforts in making today’s meeting happen.