Peaceful protest a fundamental right

15 February 2011

The force used by the security services against protesters in Algeria is unacceptable. Freedom of expression is a fundamental right, and the Socialist International calls upon the Algerian authorities to allow peaceful protests to take place, where Algerian citizens are able to voice their opinion without fear of violence or intimidation.

Governments are accountable for the actions of their security forces. In recent weeks we have seen the fall of governments that failed to listen and disregarded the will of the people. Governments obtain their legitimacy through a mandate from the people, and must be willing to listen to their citizens and take into account their concerns.

In Algeria and elsewhere, the SI will continue to be a partner to those who seek democracy and secure more open, just and representative governance. The lifting of the state of emergency imposed nearly two decades ago upon the Algerian people will prove to be an important starting point in this process.

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