The Algerian journalist, Ihsane El-Kadi, arrested on the night of December 24, 2022, and placed in police custody, will now be able to count on an international collective of lawyers for his defense.
Composed of lawyers from Morocco, Tunisia, Mauritania, Belgium and France, the collective demands neither more nor less, the immediate release of the journalist and the lifting of the seals of the media published by the Interface Media agency, namely Radio M and Maghreb Émergent, “which penalize more than thirty employees and their families”.
Saying they are determined to defend Ihsane El Kadi, “alongside our Algerian colleagues and colleagues, before the courts of Algeria and international bodies”, the lawyers of the collective also launch an “appeal to all international human rights organizations, to civil society and lawyers to support and demand the unconditional release of Ihsane El Kadi and all victims of authoritarianism”.
And to recall that Ihsane El Kadi has been kept in detention since his arrest in December, accused in this by the internal security “of engaging in activities likely to undermine the security of the State and its stability”.
“After five days in police custody, and although he presents all the necessary guarantees, he was placed in pre-trial detention on December 29, 2022 in El Harrach prison, in Algiers”, also underlines the collective, which notes that “on January 15, 2023, the Indictment Chamber at the Court of Algiers rejected the request for the release of Ihsane El Kadi submitted by his lawyers, without their knowledge, who did not were not informed of the hearing date, in violation of the Algerian Code of Criminal Procedure and internal and international standards relating to the right to a fair trial”.
It should be noted that El Kadi is prosecuted under articles 95, 95 bis and 96 of the Penal Code relating to the “receipt of funds from a foreign source for the purposes of political propaganda”, to the “receipt of funds and advantages of organizations and persons from within the country and from abroad with the intention of committing acts likely to undermine the security and stability of the State, national unity and the ‘territorial integrity’ and the ‘publication to the general public of content likely to harm the national interest and collection of donations without authorisation’.
His defense maintains in this regard that “these proceedings constitute the fourth case against journalist Ihsane El Kadi in the past two years”.
“Apart from the fact that he is presumed innocent and that he must benefit from all the guarantees of a fair trial, provided for in internal texts and international conventions, a fortiori in his capacity as a journalist, the provisional detention is in no way justified in his case, which has, moreover, all the necessary guarantees of representation, “says the collective.
It should be noted that the Moroccan party is represented by Me Souad Brahma, lawyer at the bar of Casablanca, defender of several prisoners of conscience and of the Hirak of the Rif, Me Abderrahim Jamaï, lawyer at the bar of Rabat, former President of the Bar, member of the collective of defense lawyers for Hirak detainees in the Rif, and Me Mohamed Sadkou, lawyer at the Rabat bar and defender of prisoners of conscience.