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MOTION FOR A RESOLUTION on the situation of freedoms in Algeria

26.11.2019 - (2019/2927(RSP))

with request for inclusion in the agenda for a debate on cases of breaches of human rights, democracy and the rule of law
pursuant to Rule 144 of the Rules of Procedure

Lars Patrick Berg, Joachim Kuhs, Jaak Madison, Jörg Meuthen, Bernhard Zimniok
on behalf of the ID Group

Proċedura : 2019/2927(RSP)
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European Parliament resolution on the situation of freedoms in Algeria


The European Parliament,

- having regard to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights of 1948,

- having regard to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights of 1976, in particular article 18 thereof,

- having regard to the United Nations General Assembly Resolution 36/55 of 25 November 1981 on the Declaration on the Elimination of All Forms of Intolerance and of Discrimination Based on Religion or Belief,

- having regard to the Human Rights Committee’s concluding observations on the fourth periodic report of Algeria of 17 August 2018 (CCPR/C/DZA/CO4),

- having regard to the press release by the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (“USCIRF alarmed over systematic church closures in Algeria”) of 30 October 2019,

- having regard to the EU Statement in the United Nations 3rd Committee: Introduction of draft resolution on Freedom of Religion or Belief of 15 November 2019,

- having regard to the Constitution of the People’s Democratic Republic of Algeria 1989 (amended by the constitutional revision of 1996) (the Algerian Constitution),

- having regard to the final report and recommendations of Bishop of Truro’s Independent Review for the Foreign Secretary of FCO Support for Persecuted Christians of 2019,

- having regard to its earlier resolutions on Algeria,

- having regard to Rule 144 of its Rules of Procedure,

A. whereas the Algerian presidential election is scheduled to take place on 12 December 2019; whereas mass protests against the Algerian Government have been taking place since February 2019;

B. whereas Algeria is a state party to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights of 1976;

C. whereas article 2 of the Algerian Constitution provides that Islam is the state religion; and whereas article 9 of the Algerian Constitution prohibits behaviour that is incompatible with Islamic morality;

D. whereas approximately 99% of Algeria’s population are Sunni Muslims and the remaining 1% consist of Christians, Jews and Ibadi Muslims;

E. whereas the Algerian Government has, in the past two months, forcibly closed at least eight Evangelical Protestant churches;

F. whereas the French Parliament officially opened an inquiry into the persecution of Christians in Algeria earlier this year;

1.  Condemns the forcible closure of churches by the Algerian Government and urges the Government of Algeria to respect freedom of religion as enshrined in domestic legislation as well as in international agreements to which Algeria is a party;

2. Notes with concern that Algeria’s blasphemy laws make it difficult for Christians to practice their religion without fear of prosecution; further points out that the Algerian authorities continue to resort to criminal prosecutions for peaceful speech, using articles in the penal code to criminalise acts such as “offending the president”, “insulting state officials”, and “denigrating Islam”;

3. Shares the UN Human Rights Committee’s concerns regarding the reports of closures of churches and evangelical institutions, as well as various restrictions on worship and allegations of attacks, acts of intimidation and arrests targeting persons who do not fast during Ramadan;

4. Urges the Government of Algeria to protect religious minorities within its territory and to allow Christian worshippers to freely practice their religion; further urges the Government of Algeria to abolish all legislative provisions that violate the right to freedom of religion;

5. Urges the Algerian Parliament to amend Ordinance No. 06-03 of 28 February 2006 on conditions governing the practice of faiths other than Islam, to further the right to freedom of religion in the country;

6. Encourages Algeria to abide by its own constitution by respecting the spirit of article 46 thereof on freedom of religion;

7. Calls on the Government of Algeria to put a stop to the vandalism of Christian and Jewish cemeteries in Algeria and expresses the hope that the French population from Algeria can, without exception, visit the graves of their ancestors;

8. Emphasises that, according to a recent report commissioned by the UK Secretary of State Jeremy Hunt, at least 80% of persecuted religious believers are Christians;

9. Expresses its concern that whereas a century ago Christians comprised 20% of the population in the Middle East and North Africa, this has now fallen to less than 4%;

10. Considers that the European Union and its Member States should be particularly concerned about the persecution of minorities across the world who share their Judeo-Christian heritage; calls on Member States to recognise and address the precarious and vulnerable situation of Christian minorities in countries such as Algeria where Islam is the state religion;

11. Urges the Government of Algeria to take all necessary steps to ensure that the elections that are scheduled to take place on 12 December 2019 are conducted in a fair, transparent and democratic manner as well as to allow and facilitate OSCE election observers to be present during the elections;

12.  Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Council, the Commission, the EEAS, the Delegation of the European Union to Algeria, and the Government of the People’s Democratic Republic of Algeria.



Aġġornata l-aħħar: 26 ta' Novembru 2019
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