In a move that only underlines the Algerian authorities' continued prosecution and imprisonment of journalists on vague charges, the Algiers Judicial Council has postponed the appeal trial of journalist Ihsan El Kadi to next November 20.
On last June 7, Journalist El Kadi was sentenced to 6 months in prison for a newspaper article published on M Radio website in March 2021."
On May 17, journalist El Kadi was sentenced to three years in prison and banned him from working for five years against a backdrop of publishing an article on the Algerian civil war (1992-2000), classified by the public prosecution as among false news damaging the national unity and disrupting elections.
Women Journalists Without Chains (WJWC) calls on the Algerian authorities to respect the freedom of the press, refrain from prosecuting journalists and stop the crackdown on journalists and digital media.
The WJWC associates itself with human rights organizations’ calls for an end to the imprisonment of journalists, and for the repeal of legal articles - included in the penal code - that allow a judge to apply a prison sentence to a journalist for “press violations”.
The Algerian Penal Code - amended in 2020 - imposes heavy restrictions on freedom of expression in Algeria ranked 134th out of 180 countries in the 2022 RSF's press freedom index.
Reporters Without Borders now considers Algeria as a country where press freedom faces many red lines, as the mere mention of corruption or the crackdown on demonstrations is sufficient for journalists to face threats and arrests.
Women Journalists Without Chains