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Term reduced to one year, but attorney plans to appeal to Supreme Court.
The family of imprisoned Algerian Christian Slimane Bouhafs has appealed to the Algerian President for a pardon, after he was convicted of “insulting Islam and the prophet Mohammed” in posts he made on social media.
A Christian in Algeria has been sentenced to five years in prison – the maximum term – and given a heavy fine for blasphemy against Islam and its prophet, for a social media post.
Churches in Algeria are facing intimidation and harassment, despite constitutional provisions guaranteeing freedom of worship in the country.
A Christian man from the Algerian city of Biskra was arrested on Friday by the National Gendarmerie at a checkpoint near Biskra.
Christians are the distinct minority in Algeria, representing less than 1 percent of Algeria's 38 million inhabitants, and often face restrictions when seeking to build new churches.
An Algerian judge under pressure from Islamists to uphold a Christian’s conviction for alleged proselytizing rescinded his one-year prison term Feb. 13 but doubled his fine, an attorney said.
The attorney for a Christian shocked to learn that he had been convicted of pressuring a Muslim to leave Islam said after an appeals hearing on Jan. 23 that the verdict was utterly unfounded.
The age of religious war is supposed to be long past, but try telling that to members of the fledgling Christian movement across North Africa. The region, conquered by the followers of Muhammad more than a millennium ago, is witnessing a renewed assault on the church — and indeed on religious liberty.
Without any prior notice or summons from police, a Christian convert from Islam in Algeria received word on Dec. 11 that he had been convicted of pressuring a Muslim to leave his religion.
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