IUF affiliates and representatives from the Algerian diaspora gathered in Geneva last month to denounce the continuing violation of human rights in Algeria, especially the government’s use of arbitrary detention. After an 8-day march from Chambery, France participants delivered a letter to Michelle Bachelet, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, calling on her and the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention to act in in response to the ongoing repression in Algeria.
Raouf Mellal, President of IUF-affiliated SNATEG and one of the principal organizers of the march, commented: “I walked to Geneva to bring the voice of the repressed and persecuted trade unionists in Algeria. I have been arrested several times, I have been subjected to incredible abuse and violence. The cause of the detainees is paramount. Their liberation would be an achievement for the Hirak, for democracy and for the Algerian people as a whole”.
On September 1, the Algerian state news agency Algérie Presse Service published an article accompanied by a photo of a UN meeting in Geneva falsely claiming that the complaint had been rejected by the UN within 24 hours. In an official statement, the UN Human Rights Office termed the fake news operation ‘a complete fabrication from start to finish.’