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Algeria issues ‘terrorism’ warrants for exiled activists

A former diplomat, a blogger and a journalist have been issued arrest warrants by a court in Algeria. The three exiled activists are outspoken but are being accused of attempting to turn a peaceful protest movement, the Hirak, into violence. The warrants were issued on Sunday after anti-government protests are holding weekly rallies ahead of June parliamentary elections. Algeria’s President Abdelmadjid Tebboune dissolved Parliament in February. 

Former diplomat Mohamed Larbi Zeitout, blogger Amir Boukhors and Journalist Hichem Aboud are targeted by the warrants. Zeitout lives exiled in Britain after founding an outlawed political movement called Rachad in 2007. His warrant is for charges of the “management and financing of a terrorist group”, money laundering and forgery. Boukhors has released several videos criticizing the government and Aboud was a former member of the Algerian secret service and was sentenced to seven years in prison last year in absentia. Boukhors and Aboud are located in France and face charges of money laundering and being members of a “terrorist group targeting state security.” The statement says a technical investigation showed the three men were part of a plan to shift the Hirak protest from its peaceful nature.

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