Algerian Court docket Upholds Christian’s 5-Yr Jail Sentence for Sharing Cartoon About Muhammad

A Christian’s five-year jail sentence for reposting a cartoon of the Islamic prophet Muhammad to his Fb web page three years in the past has been upheld by an Algerian courtroom. 

Morning Star News (MSN) reviews Farid Khemisti, the person’s legal professional, stated his shopper obtained the stiff sentence as a result of he was a Christian. 

“I actually hoped for a discount within the sentence – I anticipated on the worst, six months in jail,” Khemisti advised MSN. “That’s the most {that a} honest judgment would have given, however I do not suppose my shopper’s being a Christian made it any simpler.”

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Khemisti defined the person named Hamid, a 43-year-old father of 4 younger kids, was not the creator of the cartoon that he reposted to social media in 2018. 

“I pleaded for his launch as a result of it’s clear that my shopper doesn’t deserve such a heavy sanction – he isn’t the supply of this publish,” he stated. “The creator of the publication in query is overseas. The investigating safety providers couldn’t discover the rest in my shopper’s Fb account aside from this cartoon.”

Khemisti stated he requested the choose what the sentence can be if Hamid had been the creator of the cartoon. The choose advised him it might be the identical, as Article 144 of Algeria’s penal code stipulates that 5 years is the utmost penalty for insulting Muhammad.
Algeria’s Article 144 has been condemned by quite a few human rights organizations as a violation of worldwide legislation. In its report, Policing Belief, pro-democracy group Freedom Home stated the article was generally used to persecute Christians and allowed “police officers and judges to impose their very own non secular views on society, and to present a minimum of one model of Islamic observe the drive of legislation.”

Hamid was accused by an Islamic extremist with whom he had completed enterprise, the legal professional defined. The extremist notified the Algerian safety providers about Hamid’s Fb publish in December of 2020, two years after the alleged posting. 

Hamid was taken into custody on Jan. 20 and was sentenced to 5 years in jail the very subsequent day. 

Khemisti advised MSN the person’s household could attempt to enchantment the courtroom’s resolution. He might also enchantment to the northwestern African nation’s supreme courtroom. 

As CBN Information has reported, false accusations are frequent in opposition to Christians in quite a few Islamic international locations and are sometimes motivated by private vendettas or non secular hatred. Such accusations are extremely inflammatory and have the potential to spark Muslim mob lynchings, vigilante murders, and mass protests.

Algeria is ranked twenty fourth on Open Doors’ 2021 World Watch List of the international locations the place it’s most tough to be a Christian.

Islam is the state faith within the 99-percent Muslim nation. Since 2000, 1000’s of Algerian Muslims have put their religion in Christ. Algerian officers estimate the variety of Christians at 50,000, however others say it may very well be twice that quantity, in accordance with MSN

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