Independent Algeria was born in 1962. However, Kabylia, as a region constituting the base of a population with its own characteristics and social organization, is the product of a long history. This indigenous population, the first inhabitants to arrive in the places called “The Amazighs of North Africa”. Where the Amazigh word means “free man”. We understand better its meaning when we are in one of these Kabyle villages perched on top of a mountain.
Throughout its 59 years of existence, the Algerian regime has punished Kabyle citizens for exercising their basic civil and human rights. Arrests are increasing these days in Kabylia, Tizi-Ouzou and BÃ©jaÃ¯a, which remain at the forefront of the struggle for identity and democracy in Algeria.
A dangerous drift where the most basic democratic rights are violated by the justice which criminalizes political activity and opinions by laying very serious charges, which have nothing to do with criminal acts.
The arrests of politicians and peaceful activists bearing the likeness of Noureddine Ait Hammouda, Bouaziz Ait Chebib, Boumediene Hammou, Professor Fatiha Briki and dozens of detainees and defendants, who have committed no crime of murder, and corruption. Around 70 people are reportedly still detained for exercising their legitimate human rights. Some of them are serving long sentences while others are in pre-trial detention. âNew allegations of physical and sexual violence in detention have also surfaced in recent days.
The injustices committed by the regime are numerous. Here are some examples:
The persecution of religious minorities by the Algerian regime is only getting worse. âAlgeria has one of the worst records in the world when it comes to suppressing religious freedom and it continues to show blatant disregard for the protection of everyone’s religious freedoms, where secular and Christian minorities are harassed and thrown in prison for their religious beliefs. . “
The discrimination and ill-treatment inflicted with the arrests against the Berber minorities, Mzabi, Chawis, Targuis and Kabyles for having carried the Berber flag which represents the identity of the Amazigh people during the marches against the dictatorial regime.
Journalists and human rights activists who criticize the regime’s repeated violations are also at risk of being behind bars. In April 2021, Rabah KarÃ¨che, journalist for the French-language newspaper LibertÃ©, was placed under arrest warrant, after having published a report on a protest movement by the Tuaregs, a local Berber minority, during a demonstration by citizens against the new territorial division, which already used by separating the region of Bourmerdes and SÃ©tif from Kabylia.
The brutality of the regime against the Kabyle people is not new. From 1962, the year of Algeria’s independence, to 2021, the Algerian regime marginalized the Kabylia region, in particular by arrests, torture whenever the Kabyle people speak openly to defend their fundamental rights, to preserve its culture and ancestral identity.