Boudjeema Ghechir, one of the defence lawyers, says that this reversal “demonstrates an admission of guilt in the justice system,” but apparently the law under which the six were first arrested still remains. Sharia Alert from Algeria, and an update on this story: “Algeria: 6 Absolved After Appeal For Eating During Ramadan,” from ANSAmed, October 8 (thanks to Insubria):
ALGIERS, OCTOBER 8 – The six people who were condemned at first to four years in prison for “not respecting Ramadan” were absolved yesterday during an appeals process at the court of Bsikra, 400 km south west of Algiers. This was reported today by El Watan. “Setting an appeal only nine days after the first sentence” said Boudjeema Ghechir, one of the defence lawyers, “demonstrates an admission of guilt in the justice system”. The arrest of the six accused of having eaten during the day during the month of fasting of Ramadan created bitter controversy in the Algerian press that compared the sentence to that of Habiba K., the young convert to Christianity, accused by a tribunal in Tiaret of “practicing a non Muslim cult”. “The liberty of cult is clearly sustained by the Koran which asks the prophets to not obligate anyone and to leave everyone to their convictions”, added Ghechir, “the panic possessed some heads; the issue of evangelical proselytism and the safeguarding of Islam does not have to bring on acts that damage Islam itself”. (ANSAmed).