Politics in a free state should mean just that – Freedom. We have a Constitution that promises us freedom to choose creed, speech, religion, politics etc. Since 1976, Algeria has claimed such freedoms. Their Constitution is very well written and mirrors some United States constitutional rights.
Bouteflika was voted into his position on April, 29, 1999 and won by 73.8% of the votes and then reelected April 8, 2004 by 83.5% and in 2006 appointed Abdelaziz Belkhadem as Prime Minister. Shortly after this he announced a change in the constitution allowing the president to remain in office indefinitely.
(Note: President Bouteflika won the election and re-election by a staggering amount; however it was not without discrepancies. Out of 47 candidates only 7 of those were allowed to run. Out of protest, 6 others withdrew giving the majority of the votes to Abdelaziz Bouteflika.) Let us pray for President Abdelaziz and his leadership.
Ordinance 06-03 passed in 2006 and was carried out largely by a man named Hamou Ahmed Touhami. President Bouteflika appointed this man as governor (Wali) of the Bejaia Provence. This Ordinance has been the most troublesome for the freedom of minority Christians.
Excerpts from Ordinance 06-03
Chapter III: Criminal Provisions
The punishment is one (1) to three (3) years of imprisonment and a fine from 250.000 DA (approximately $5,000 USD) to 500.000 DA (approximately $7,000 USD) for anyone who by verbal or written or distributed discourse in structures where religious worship takes place or who utilizes any other audiovisual means, containing a provocation to resist the fulfillment of the laws or the decision of the public authority, or tending to incite a part of the citizens to rebellion, without prejudice of more serious penalties, if the provocation is followed by effects.
The penalty is imprisonment from three (3) to five (5) years and the fine is from 500.000 DA (approximately $7,000 USD) to 1,000,000 DA (approximately $ 14,000 USD) if the guilty person is a leader of a religious group.
Without prejudice of more serious penalties, the punishment is imprisonment from two (2) to five (5) years and a fine from 500.000 DA to 1,000.000 for whomever: 1-incites, constrains or utilizes means of seduction tending to convert a Muslim to another religion, or by using to this end establishments for teaching, for education, for health, of a social or cultural nature, or training institutions or any other establishment, or distributes printed documents or audiovisual productions or by any other aid or means, which has as its goal to shake the faith of a Muslim.
I bring this news and information to the forefront not to offend, but rather to prepare us all. As we pray, as we write to government officials, or contact media, it will help us in our campaign by understanding the issues.
As always, we thank you for your time, thoughts, prayers, and actions. We will keep you updated on the website www.spiritofmartyrdom.com and through email. Please feel free to contact us. God bless!
Pray for the boldness and wisdom of the Algerian Christians as they seek to be good citizens.
Pray for the understanding of all Algerians of God given freedom and the opportunities to share these principles.
Pray for President Abdelaziz Bouteflika to rule well and protect the freedom of all Algerians
Pray for Spirit of Martyrdom ministries that we serve the living martyrs of Christ in Algeria with Spiritual encouragement and love.
Friday and this weekend:
Pray for Christians in America to wake up and grow in prayer, compassion and understanding of the persecuted Christians in Algeria.
Week Verse: Psalm 94:20-23:
Can wicked rulers be allied with you, those who frame injustice by statute? They band together against the life of the righteous and condemn the innocent to death. But the LORD has become my stronghold, and my God the rock of my refuge. He will bring back on them their iniquity and wipe them out for their wickedness; the LORD our God will wipe them out.
This week please write the President Abdelaziz Bouteflika and then send the letter through the Embassy. Remember that Christ calls us to bless all people and honor those in authority.
Feel free to copy and paste this letter: In subject line: “Please Forward to President Abdelaziz Bouteflika”
Dear President Abdelaziz Bouteflika, Thank you for your leadership in Algeria. God has given me a love for the Algerian people and I have prayed for God to give you wisdom. This is why I am contacting you. I am concerned about the legal freedoms for all Algerians. According to your Constitution, the Algerian people have fundamental rights and freedoms. However, Ordinance 06-03 continues to be used to discriminate against the growing Christian minority in Algeria. Pastor Siaghi Krimo on May 28th was sentence to 5 years in prison and $2,760,USD for simply giving a Christian CD away to his Muslim neighbor. I am certain that you see that when one group of people are not free to express themselves then no group is truly free as the majority will oppress the minority with their world view. Please use your leadership to do everything possible to abolish the laws of Ordinance 06-07 and that the fine and prison sentence against Pastor Siaghi Krimo will be dropped.
EMBASSY OF THE PEOPLE’S DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF ALGERIA
Attention: President Abdelaziz Bouteflika
2118 Kalorama Road NW – Washington DC 20008
Tel: (202) 265-2800
Fax: (202) 667-2174
Email address: firstname.lastname@example.org