Algerian court convicts rights activist for 2014 remarks

An Algerian court has arrested then convicted a human rights activist for inciting violence more than four years after his statements in support of a minority.

The court in Ghardaia sentenced Salim Yezza to a one-year suspended prison sentence on Tuesday and fined him $115.00.

His lawyer, Kouceila Zerguine, said on Facebook that he will appeal.

Yezza, who lives in France, was arrested July 16 at the airport in Biskra as he tried to return home after attending his father's funeral.

The conviction stems from Yezza's denunciation of "Islamo-Arab violence" against Mozabites, a Berber ethnic minority centred in the desert city of Ghardaia who follow the Ibadi rite of Islam. Tensions, including deadly clashes, between Arabs and the Mozabites reached a peak in 2014.

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