Algeria's Minister of Justice, Belkacem Zeghmati, has presented a draft bill to the government covering election crimes and their stipulated penalties, local media have reported. If passed into law, anyone who tries to obstruct the legislative election, for example, faces up to 20 years in prison.
On Wednesday, Zeghmati told the cabinet that the penal sanctions stipulated in this regard are mentioned in Articles 294 through to Article 313 of the Constitutional Law related to the electoral system. These provide for lengthy prison sentences for anyone who destroys or removes the ballot box, breaches the ballot rules or disrupts the voting.
The justice minister indicated that, in anticipation of the legislative election on 12 June, the provisions related to election crimes are meant to protect the polling process from abuse. The intention is to ensure that Algerian citizens can exercise their right to vote freely.