Press release on the dissolution of the association “Rassemblement Actions Jeunesse” (RAJ in Acronym) by the Algerian authorities
In this context, it is deeply concerned by the deterioration of the situation of human rights defenders in North Africa, particularly in Algeria
The African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights (the Commission), through its Special Rapporteur on Human Rights Defenders and Focal Point on Retaliation in Africa, is following the human rights situation in Africa with particular attention.
In this context, it is deeply concerned by the deterioration of the situation of human rights defenders in North Africa, particularly in Algeria. In particular, the Commission learned with regret of the dissolution on 23 February 2023, by the Algerian judicial authorities, of the association known as “Rassemblement Actions Jeunesse” -RAJ, which was created in 1992. It is accused of acting in contradiction with the law on associations, itself contested by several Algerian civil society organisations.
The African Commission deplores such a measure and wishes to remind the Algerian authorities that such a decision, however judicial it may be, is nonetheless contradictory to the obligations arising from articles 10 and 11 on freedom of association and assembly protected by the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights (the African Charter), as well as other international and regional human rights instruments to which Algeria is a party. It is also contrary to the Guidelines on Freedom of Association and Assembly in Africa.
For the Commission, this inadmissible decision constitutes an act of intimidation and an attempt to silence human rights defenders and undoubtedly contributes to the reduction of civic space in this country. The Commission invites the Algerian authorities to examine in a sovereign manner the ways and means of its cancellation.
For the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights
Honourable Rémy Ngoy Lumbu, Chairperson, and Special Rapporteur on Human Rights Defenders and Focal Point on Retaliation in Africa