Algerian Christians request continued prayer for Foudhil Bahloul (35), a Christian from a Muslim background as he waits for a 10 November decision on his appeal of a conviction on several charges. His case was heard in the provincial appeals court of Ain Defla on 27 October.
He is appealing a six month prison sentence and 100,000 DZD fine (approx US $750) he was given on 7 July for “collecting donations and accepting gifts without a license from the authorized departments.” This charge stemmed from his occasionally accepting assistance for living costs while he seeks employment.
The verdict followed a 30 June hearing, in which he was surprised to face additional charges of distributing Bibles, printing brochures to distribute to Muslims. The verdict also referred to “suspicious evangelistic activities,” “poisoning the minds of youth” and “luring people to convert to Christianity.” In the appeals hearing, he defended himself against those allegations. He was also asked to give a testimony about his faith, and how he converted to Christianity, although he pointed out to the judge that this is not the subject of the case.
He was arrested on 17 April, when his house searched and Christian materials confiscated. All charges are based on the 2006-03 Ordinance to “Regulate non-Muslim Worship,” carrying punishment of up to five years in prison and fines of up to 1,000,000 DZD (US$7,500).
Christians in Algeria request continued prayer for Foudhil
- that he will continue to experience the peace of Jesus and the guidance of the Holy Spirit
- that he will be acquitted from all charges in the court decision on 10 November
- that the continued campaign against Christians in Algeria would come to an end
- for more tolerance toward other religions and more freedom of worship in Algeria