Algerian Christian faces persecution in Tunisia after release from jail
Morning Star News reports that after Slimane Bouhafs was released from prison in 2018, having served nearly two years for violating Algeria’s blasphemy laws; further persecution drove him to Tunisia.
Initially sentenced to five years in prison in 2016 for messages he posted on Facebook favouring Christianity over Islam, Bouhafs benefited from advocacy efforts that drew international attention. He received a partial presidential pardon in 2017 that resulted in his release on the 1st of April, 2018. Like many Christians branded as blasphemers of Islam, his troubles did not end with his release.
After his release, the government cut off disability benefits he had received due to a condition that caused him to stop working as a security guard in 1999, he said. Before that, he had worked as a policeman until 1994.
Fearful for himself and his family, he decided to seek asylum in Tunisia, as obtaining a visa for Europe or North America was impossible. He arrived in Tunisia in October 2018 – where he has been threatened repeatedly by phone and on social media.