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Human rights defenders and government opponents are arbitrarily arrested, tortured, and held in solitary confinement by security forces, while perpetrators enjoy impunity. Torture and ill-treatment seem to be a structural issue, despite Algeria being a State party to the Convention against Torture. These practices have increased since the beginning of the Hirak protest movement in 2019, with peaceful activists and journalists arbitrarily arrested, ill-treated and tortured, and convicted under Penal Code provisions such as « harming the integrity of the national security ». Women’s rights groups, which are very active in the protests, have also been targeted by the repression.
Judicial authorities have not initiated proceedings to investigate the fate of thousands of people forcibly disappeared since the 1990s or to identify, prosecute and punish the perpetrators. The OMCT will continue its struggle to have hundreds of detained human rights activists freed from detention.