In 2019, Algerians protested massively against the government led by Abdelaziz Bouteflika, literally a wheelchair President. Even though Bouteflika resigned, the army quickly reversed the democratic gains. Today, Algeria is another example of a country where the Arab Spring has failed. This article from the News Desk of Algiers Herald reports that Algeria issued arrest warrants for exiled democracy activists. Nothing more demonstrates the determination of the authorities in Algeria to put an end to the country’s Hirak movement or pro-democracy movement. Here is an excerpt:
The Bir Mourad Raïs prosecution service announced on March 22 that it will be issuing international arrest warrants for terrorism-related charges against several exiled pro-democracy activists. Namely, Mohamed Larbi Zitout, co-founder of the pro-democracy movement ‘Rachad’, YouTube commentator Amir Boukhors (known as Amir Dz), former intelligence officer turned journalist/writer Hicham Aboud, and two other individuals named Mansouri Ahmed and Mohamed Abdellah. They stand accused of terrorism according to the prosecution service’s statement.
The prosecution service was quoted as stating that it is “a serious criminal case of undermining public order, the security and the stability of the country, a case undergoing judicial treatment after deep investigations carried out over several months which made it possible to identify its sponsors, among them internet activists“. However, the prosecution service did not put forward evidence to back the allegations made, leading political commentators to suggest that the charges are once again fabricated. Others see in the announcement yet another instance of an authoritarian regime abusing Interpol’s red notice system to persecute and taint the reputation of exiled critics.
Moreover, it should be noted that these same exiled activists have in the past been the subject of unsubstantiated international arrest warrants for various charges.