08/29/2020 Algeria (International Christian Concern) – After months of delay because of the pandemic, Algeria’s president has finally announced that the constitutional referendum will occur on November 1st. The date also marks the anniversary of the start of Algeria’s war for independence.
Algeria’s Christian community has anxiously waited for this announcement. Since 2017, the authorities have closed several of their churches. The pandemic closed the rest. The government also experienced a transition of power between the start of the 2017 closures and the start of the pandemic, with the result being the promise of a new constitution. Algerian Christians have repeatedly requested from the authorities that they respect religious freedom and reopen the churches, but the uncertain political environment made such requests easily ignored.
The pandemic further compounded this problem. It is not known if the authorities will reopen all closed churches, or only those which were open before the pandemic’s start. Many believe, however, that until the new constitution is established, Algeria’s political scene will be that which makes it hard to ask any questions of the authorities.
For interviews, please contact Olivia Miller, Communications Coordinator: firstname.lastname@example.org.