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3/23/2022 Algeria (International Christian Concern) – Last week, International Christian Concern (ICC) joined several other human rights organizations to host a virtual briefing on the deteriorating state of religious freedom in Algeria. Speakers highlighted the ongoing arrests of Christians who are forced to worship outside of church buildings due to government closures of many of the Protestant churches throughout the country.

ICC and its partners briefed Congressional staffers on some of the most recent developments for Algeria’s Christian community, including the recent arrest of Mohammed Derrab and new threats of church closure from government officials. These fall in line with a pattern of increased persecution against the country’s Protestant Christian community over the past couple of years.

Additionally, this month, Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman met with Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune during a trip to the region. In the meeting, Deputy Secretary Sherman emphasized to President Tebboune the importance the U.S. government places on religious freedom, according to a statement from State Department Spokesperson Ned Price.

Last year, ICC joined a coalition of partner organizations to assist in the drafting of a letter sent to Secretary of State Antony Blinken from a bipartisan group of senators. The letter, led by Senator Mark Rubio (R-FL), detailed the persecution faced by the Protestant Christian community from the Algerian government and urged Secretary Blinken to pressure his Algerian counterparts on these issues.

ICC will continue to work to inform the entire American government on this concerning trend of persecution in Algeria so that U.S. officials will continue to work for the protection of religious freedom for all religious minorities in Algeria.

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