The court case of brothers Hocine and Abdelkader Mohamed, two Algerian militiamen from Relizane, southwest of Algiers; is as explosive as the attacks of Kouachi brothers. While living in Nimes, in southern France, since 1998, the two brothers were referred to the Gard Department circuit court for violations of human rights during the Algerian civil war of the 1990s. For the seven victims and victim families, this is a victory against impunity. At the same time, in Algiers, the finger is pointed towards the Algerian army, which explains the disgraceful silence of the Algerian press on this unique case, especially French-speaking media, and the lack of action from the Algerian justice, also a regime’s accessory, despite the signed agreement between the two countries on mutual legal assistance.
In France, the justice system is not perfect but it can be considered independent and impartial. It refuses to bend to the denunciations of the Algerian authorities, which it considers as an interference with its internal affairs. The proceedings against Mohamed brothers were founded on the principle of the French courts’ universal competency, conferred by the International Convention against Torture. This convention, which was adopted in 1984 and integrated into the Criminal Code in 1994, states that the French authorities are obligated to sue, arrest, or try any person who is suspected of committing acts torture within its territory, regardless of where they were committed or the nationality of the victims.
The multiple barriers and pressures exerted by the Algerian government on France went with no effect. The order of the examining judge in Nîmes on 26 December 2014 to return Mohamed brothers before the circuit court is perceived by the Algerian military oligarchy as a betrayal of France. There was betrayal because there had been a secret deal between the two countries. In this deal, France was to stop talking about the civil war of the 1990s, 200 000 deaths, and responsibilities; and Bouteflika’s Charter for Peace and Reconciliation adopted in 2005 was only a shield. In return, Algiers, assured the French authorities that there would be no more terrorist attacks on French territory.
The trial in the Gard circuit court was perceived by the Algerian generals as a threat by the French courts, which could prohibit them from enjoying their misappropriated money that is secured in France; a highly dangerous and unacceptable situation for them. So, they had to react quickly and carefully. Based on their known hooligan behavior, it is possible that they allowed or even sponsored the attacks against Charlie Hebdo. They have already reacted in a similar way in prior events, when they compelled France to support them during the atrocious 1990s, after the cancellation in December 1991 of legislative elections. Other event examples to their credit are the taking hostage of Air France Flight 8969 in Algiers in December 1994, the 1995 bombing of the RER B in Saint Michel, the 1996 murder of seven Trappist monks at the Tibehirine monastery, and last October’s insurmountable barriers of the Algerian authorities to the French anti-terrorist judge, Marc Trévidic, to prevent him from identifying the killers and prove their responsibilities.
Meanwhile in Algeria, the handling of the Islamist onslaught after the attacks against Charlie Hebdo clearly showed how the Algerian military manipulate the Islamist threat to remain in power. On one hand, they banned domesticated Islamists’ peaceful demonstration against Charlie Hebdo’s cartoons, on the other hand, they energized the violent protests of radical Islamists, the ones and only capable of spreading fear in the Western countries and raising awareness of imminent threat of attack at their borders, they refuse to cooperate with the government in Algiers. Abdelfatah Hamadache, the puppet imam of Belcourt went on national television to present an apologia for this crime and pronounce fatwas (rulings) that were dictated by the Ministry of Defense.
To make the world believe that the peoples of Algeria have the same position on this issue, these manipulators have operated on another level. They called upon their network of ‘intellectuals’ to use twisted wording to denounce freedom of speech that is the heartbeat of democracy in Europe. While the independence of Algeria turned the Kabyles, the Tuaregs and the Mozabits into second class citizens, a Kabyle lawyer – who, once secular, is now a member of the network of ‘intellectuals’ – thought of nothing better than suggest to Muslim countries (Saudi Arabia, Iran, Qatar, Pakistan, Sudan, …) to take advantage of this opportunity to « move forward with democracy » and appeal to international bodies to reconsider the freedom to criticize religions, remembered as the foundation of the Enlightenment Age, and amend laws to incriminate violations against religions and prophets.
These very intellectuals have not made a whisper when, on August 3, 2013, Kabylia was publically condemned because the Kabyles had responded to the call from the Movement for Self-Determination of Kabylia to express in the face the world their freedom of worship, their secular character and their commitment to freedom of speech. These intellectuals never wrote a single sentence about the massacre behind closed doors perpetrated by the police and the Algerian national guard against the Moabites.
Like the Kurds who came out victorious in Kobané, where wolrd’s great powers have struggled to push back the obscurantist forces of the Islamic State, Kabylia, Azawad, Mzab and Nefoussa in Libya alike are all territories of freedom and peace. Women and men who live there have pushed Muslim fundamentalism for centuries. These are admirable people to whom the international community had better listen, must recognize and help.
The Anavad, Kabylia’s Provisional Government, has often reported the dangerous compromise of French political authorities with Arab monarchies and African dictators, which time has now proven to be right. France and Western countries are then expected to really recognize Amazigh peoples’ sovereignty over their territory in the interest of humanity and peace in the world.
vice president of Anavad (Provisional Government of Kabylia)
Traduction [from french->http://www.tamurt.info/fr/Des-freres-Mohamed-aux-freres-Kouachi.html?lang=fr] by Massinissa Mézache