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Algeria: El Manchar shuts down

People walk past a newspaper stand in Algiers, Algeria on 16 September 2019 [RYAD KRAMDI/AFP/Getty Images]
People walk past a newspaper stand in Algiers, Algeria on 16 September 2019 [RYAD KRAMDI/AFP/Getty Images]

The Algerian online news website El Manchar announced that it is closing, reported by Algiers Herald.

The satirical news publication, a poplar site among the youth in Algeria, issued a statement saying, “El Manchar, it’s over. We will find ourselves in a better Algeria. An Algeria where this fear will not exist and where everyone can deploy their creative forces. See you soon.”

The editorial team further says,

the climate of repression of freedoms, the imprisonment of citizens following their activities on social media has led us to reflect on the risks that we run.

Algeria has been criticised for restricting the freedom of expression following the ratification of a law criminalising the dissemination of fake news, which primarily affects journalists and social media users.

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Algerian authorities have also been accused of using the Covid-19 pandemic to quash the popular protest movement, which led to the ousting of former President of Algeria Abdelaziz Bouteflika last year.

Police have increased arrests against journalists and dissidents since the start of the coronavirus crisis, which coincided with the weekly demonstrations.

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