Oct 12, 2020 An Algerian activist acquired 10 years in jail for “inciting atheism” and insulting Islam, a sentence rights teams say is the longest but for individuals within the anti-government protests that erupted final 12 months. Yacine Mebarki, 52, was additionally convicted of “undermining national unity” and fined 10 million Algerian dinars ($77,400). He was arrested on Sept. 30 at his home within the japanese metropolis of Khenchela. “His wrongdoing? Police found a time-worn old Quran from his father with one page missing,” tweeted Said Salhi, vp of the Algerian League for the Defence of Human Rights. Mebarki’s sentence is up to now the longest for any members of the the largely peaceable protest motion often known as Hirak. The leaderless protests erupted in February 2019 when 82-year-old President Abdelaziz Bouteflika introduced his plan to run for a fifth time period. Millions of protesters succeeded in forcing the resignation of the longtime president and different members of the county’s political elite. Weekly Hirak demonstrations continued till the federal government banned them in March, citing coronavirus considerations. Despite the ban, a whole lot of protesters took to the streets of the capital Algiers on Monday, and have been met with arrests. According to the National Committee for the Liberation of Detainees, a rights group that tracks prisoners of conscience, greater than 60 individuals, together with journalists, are imprisoned in reference to the protest motion. In an effort to appease the pro-democracy protesters, the Algerian authorities has authorized a Nov. 1 referendum on constitutional reform. This story comprises reporting from AFP.