Algerian justice on Thursday decided to release Karim Tabbou, an emblematic figure of the popular anti-regime movement “Hirak”. This gesture can announce other releases of opponents, ahead of the anniversary of Independence Day.
A symbolic liberation. Algerian justice on Thursday, July 2, decided to release the emblematic figure “Hirak”, Karim Tabbou. “The request for provisional release has been accepted. Tabbou will be released on Thursday,” said one of the opponents’ lawyers, Maître Abdelghani Badi.
He should be released on Thursday afternoon.
Karim Tabbou jailed since September 26, 2019 was sentenced on March 24 to one year in prison for “undermining the integrity of national territory”.
During this trial, the accused refused to show up without the presence of his attorneys, but the judge refused to accede to his request. Karim Tabbou had been unhealthy during a negotiation, victims of high blood pressure, according to his lawyers.
The opponent is also charged with “damaging the morale of the arm” in another case, where the trial has been postponed until September 14.
Seventy prisoners of conscience behind bars
The NGO on human rights welcomed the decision of Algerian justice. “Algeria, Karim Tabbou finally released. Great relief while I was waiting for the others,” tweeted immediately Said Salhi, Vice President of the Algerian Human Rights Alliance.
“Good News: Provisional Freedom for #KarimTabbou,” added Amnesty International, which had launched an international campaign to be released. And to demand “immediate and unconditional release of all prisoners of conscience in Algeria”. “Karim Tabbou released by his captors. He remains everyone else. He will then remain there to free justice,” cured Abdellah Benadouda, founder of Radio Corona International (RCI), a pro-Hirak station based in the United States. According to the National Committee for the Liberation of Prisoners, a support association, nearly 70 prisoners of conscience are currently behind bars. , mostly for Facebook posts.
Gesture of satisfaction before the anniversary of independence?
Karim Tabbou is one of the most famous faces and voices of “Hirak”, the anti-regime protest movement that broke out on February 22, 2019. Leader of a small unregistered opposition party, the Union Democratic and Social (UDS), his portraits were regularly noticed on a weekly basis demonstrations in Algeria.
“We are happy for Tabbou and his family, it is a welcome decision. We are waiting for all the prisoners to be released, it would be a good gesture of acquisition,” said another lawyer, Me Mustapha Bouchachi.
A first sign? Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune pardoned six prisoners on Wednesday night, three of whom were linked to “Hirak”. and that is the occasion for calls for national unity.
Since the December 12, 2019 election, Abdelmadjid Tebboune had ordained several presidential pardons in favor of thousands of prisoners, but so far, prisoners from “Hirak” have been ruled out.
In addition to Karim Tabbou, another well-known activist, Amira Bouraoui, was also released on Thursday.