LGBT rights in Algeria

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LGBT rights in Algeria Algeria
Same-sex sexual activity legal? Illegal since 1966[1]
Fine, 2 months to 3 years imprisonment
Gender identity/expression both male and female is illegal
Military service No
Discrimination protections None
Family rights
Recognition of
No recognition of same-sex relationships
Adoption No

Lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) persons in Algeria face legal challenges and discrimination not experienced by non-LGBT citizens. According to the International Lesbian and Gay Association's May 2008 report, both male and female same-sex sexual acts are illegal in Algeria.[2]

Law regarding same-sex sexual activity[edit]

Article 338 of Algerian law (English translation) reads:

"Anyone guilty of a homosexual act is punishable with imprisonment of between 2 months and two years, and with a fine of 500 to 2000 Algerian Dinars. If one of the participants is below 18 years old, the punishment for the older person can be raised to 3 years' imprisonment and a fine of 10,000 dinars"

— Article 338, (ILGA May 2008 world laws report[2])

Article 333 of the Algerian law (English translation) reads:

""When the outrage to public decency has consisted of an act against nature with an individual of the same sex, the penalty is imprisonment of between 6 months and 3 years, and a fine of between 1,000 and 10,000 Algerian Dinars."

— Article 333, ILGA May 2008 world laws report[2])

The criminals laws originate from the prevailing mores in Algeria that view homosexuality and cross-dressing as against the Islamic faith.

Constitutional law[edit]

Article 3 of the Constitution stipulates that Islam shall be the official religion, but the Constitution also broadly guarantees equality for all citizens (Article 24), respect for human rights (33) and "freedom of creed and opinion" (Article 36).

The right to privacy is expressed guaranteed in Article 39 as well as the right to create political organizations (Article 42) and the right to access an education (Article 53), health care (Article 54) and fair work rules (Article 55).

These broad Constitutional protections could be used to advance the rights of LGBT persons in Algeria.

Living conditions[edit]

Homosexuality and cross-dressing are prohibited by law, and the prevailing social attitude is openly negative, even violent. The law does not recognize or respect the civil rights of LGBT persons. Officially, there are no gay-friendly establishments and no political organization is allowed to campaign for LGBT rights. Harassment, violence, and murder of LGBT persons by family members, religious fundamentalists or other vigilant groups is generally tolerated.

These sorts of bias-motivated crimes are often referred to as honor killings, because the perpetrators are often family members or neighbors who justify their violent homophobia as saving the honor of the family, or the community.[3] Examples of hate crimes against homosexuals include the stoning of two men in the street in 2001[4] and the killing of two men, one in 1994 and the other in 1996.[4]

Most attempts at same-sex marriage end in police action, as was the case in a 2005 attempt.[5]

This troublesome and dangerous life led one man, Ramzi Isalam, to seek asylum in the United Kingdom.[4]

Summary table[edit]

Same-sex sexual activity legal No (Penalty: Fines & up to 2 years prison)
Equal age of consent No
Anti-discrimination laws in employment only No
Anti-discrimination laws in the provision of goods and services No
Anti-discrimination laws in all other areas (Incl. indirect discrimination, hate speech) No
Same-sex marriages No
Recognition of same-sex couples No
Step-child adoption by same-sex couples No
Joint adoption by same-sex couples No
Gays and lesbians allowed to serve openly in the military No
Right to change legal gender No
Access to IVF for lesbians No
Commercial surrogacy for gay male couples No
MSMs allowed to donate blood No

See also[edit]


External links[edit]