Algerian human rights campaigner on national TV
Farouk Ksentini, president of the Algerian national committee for the defence of human rights has been campaigning for the release of the director of Le Matin, Mohamed Benchicou, who was placed under house arrest six months ago at El-Harrach. Recently invited to a forum organized by Algerian National Television, he has stated that international human rights groups have done their best to draw public attention to this incident and believe Algeria’s international image has been damaged as a result.
The arrest of Mohamed Benchicou has been the rallying cry of the nascent Algerian human rights network that is demanding a totally free and open press. As the Algerian government pushes through privatization and other structural reform measures, with the help of the international community the issue of the handling of human rights acquires a more nuanced diplomatic significance as Algeria’s human rights record is coming under more scrutiny.