Our friends at Arabic Literature (in English) recently posted the disturbing news of a call by Algerian Salafi leader Abdelfatah Hamadache — called “un obscure salafiste” by the paper Le Matin — for the death of award-winning Algerian novelist Kamel Daoud.

 

DaoudOn December 16, Salafi leader Abdelfatah Hamadache declared a fatwa condemning the writer and journalist Kamel Daoud to death. The declaration to kill the Daoud — whose debut novel, Meursault, Counter-Investigation, has been both a critical darling and a best-seller in France — was made on Facebook.

“If Sharia law was applied in Algeria,” Hamadache wrote on Facebook, “the punishment would have been to kill [Daoud]” for his writings.

According to the Algerian TSA news service, Daoud plans to file a legal complaint. “I will file a complaint tomorrow morning, because this is a call for murder.”

According to TSA, Hamadache responded that “I did not say I was going to kill him and I have not called on Muslims to do so. We ask the Algerian authorities to apply “al Had” (the death sentence) and that is something of which we are proud!”

Immediately, social media lit up about the incident, although mostly in French. A multilingual petition quickly had 800-some signatories, and others wrote on Facebook or Twitter.

 

Sign the online petition for Kamel Daoud!