Algeria 1989 Constitution (reinstated 1996, reviewed 2016)

Table of Contents


CHAPTER I. Algeria

Article 1

Algeria shall be a People’s Democratic Republic. It shall be one and indivisible.

Article 2

Islam shall be the religion of the State.

Article 3

Arabic shall be the national and official language.

Arabic shall remain the official language of the State.

A High Council for the Arabic Language shall be established under the auspices of the President of the Republic.

The High Council for the Arabic Language shall be assigned the special task of working towards the affluence of the Arabic language, the generalisation of its use in scientific and technological fields and promoting the translation into it for this purpose.

Article 4

Tamazight shall also be a national and an official language.

The State shall endeavour to promote and develop it in all its linguistic varieties in use throughout the national territory.

An Algerian academy for the Tamazight language shall be established under the authority of the President of the Republic.

It shall be supported by the work of the experts and assigned the task of providing the necessary requirements to develop the Tamazight language in order to integrate it as an official language in the future.

The modalities of implementing this Article shall be stipulated by an organic law.

Article 5

The capital of the Republic shall be Algiers.

Article 6

The national emblem and the national anthem are conquests of the Revolution of November 1, 1954. They shall be unalterable.

These two symbols of the Revolution, having become those of the Republic, shall have the following features:

  1. The national emblem shall be green and white with a red star and crescent moon placed at the centre.
  2. The national anthem shall be «Qassaman» with all its stanzas.

The seal of the State shall be determined by law.

CHAPTER II. The People

Article 7

The people shall be the source of all powers.

National sovereignty shall belong exclusively to the people.

Article 8

The constituent power shall belong to the people.

The people shall exercise their sovereignty through the institutions they establish.

The people shall exercise this sovereignty by means of referenda and through their elected representatives.

The President of the Republic may have direct recourse to the expression of the will of the people.

Article 9

The people shall establish institutions with the objective of:

  • safeguarding and consolidating national sovereignty and independence;
    safeguarding and consolidating the national identity and unity;

    protecting the basic freedoms of the citizens and the social and cultural flourishing of the Nation;

    promoting social justice;

    eradicating regional disparities in the domain of development;

    encouraging the building of a diversified economy that appreciates all the country’s faculties, be they natural, human or scientific.

    protecting the national economy against all forms of misappropriation, speculation, bribery, illegal trading, abuse, unlawful acquisition and arbitrary confiscation.

Article 10

The institutions shall not indulge in:

  • feudal, regionalist and nepotistic practices;
    establishing relations of exploitation and bonds of dependency;

    infringing the Islamic morals and the values of the November Revolution.

Article 11

The people shall be free to choose their representatives.

The representation of the people shall have no restrictions save for those specified in the Constitution and the electoral law.


Article 12

The State shall derive its legitimacy and raison d’être from the volition of the people.

«By the people and for the people» shall be the motto of the State.

The State shall exclusively be in the service of the people.

Article 13

The sovereignty of the State shall extend to its territory, airspace and territorial waters.

The State shall also exercise its sovereign right, established by international law, over each of its different zones of maritime space belonging to it.

Article 14

It shall be emphatically prohibited to relinquish or forsake any part of the national territory.

Article 15

The State shall be founded on the principles of organisational democracy, the separation of powers and social justice.

The elected Assembly shall constitute the framework within which the people shall express their volition and monitor the action of public authorities.

The State shall promote participatory democracy at local governments’ level.

Article 16

The local authorities of the State shall be the Municipality and the Wilaya.

The Municipality shall be the basic authority.

Article 17

The elected Assembly shall epitomise the basis of decentralisation and the setting where citizens partake in running public affairs.

Article 18

Public property shall be an asset of the national community.

It shall encompass the subsoil, mines and quarries, natural energy sources, and the mineral, natural and living resources in the various areas of the national maritime properties, waters and forests.

It shall also encompass the railways, maritime and air transports, the post and telecommunications, as well as all other assets stipulated by the law.

Article 19

The State shall ensure the rational use of natural resources and their preservation for the benefit of future generations.

The State shall protect agricultural lands.

The State shall also conserve public water domain.

The law shall determine the modalities of implementing this provision.

Article 20

The national domain shall be defined by the law.

It shall comprise the public and private domains of the State, the Wilaya and the Municipality.

The management of the national domain shall be in conformity with law.

Article 21

The organisation of foreign trade shall be the competency of the State.

The law shall determine the stipulations pertaining to foreign trade practice and control.

Article 22

Expropriation shall only be effectuated within the framework of the law.

It shall give rise to a fair and equitable compensation.

Article 23

Positions and tenures in the civil service shall not constitute a source of enrichment or a means to serve private interests.

Any person appointed to a senior government position, elected to a local assembly, appointed or elected to a national assembly or a national institution, shall disclose their assets before assuming office and at the end of their tenure.

The modalities of implementing these provisions shall be stipulated by the law.

Article 24

Abuse of authority shall be punishable by law.

Article 25

The impartiality of the administration shall be guaranteed by law.

Article 26

The State shall be responsible for the security of people and properties.

Article 27

The State shall endeavour to protect the rights and the interests of its citizens abroad in compliance with international law, the conventions concluded with the host countries, national legislation and the legislation of the countries of residence.

The State shall attend to preserving the identity of its citizens residing abroad, consolidating their ties with the Nation and mobilising their contribution to the development of their motherland.

Article 28

The consolidation and development of the Nation’s defensive potential shall be regulated by the National People’s Army.

The National People’s Army shall assume the permanent task of preserving national independence and defending national sovereignty.

It shall also assume the task of protecting the unity of the country and the integrity of its land, as well as defending its land, airspace and the various zones of its maritime domain.

Article 29

Algeria shall not resort to war to impinge on the legitimate sovereignty and the freedom of other peoples.

She shall endeavour to settle international differences through peaceful means.

Article 30

Algeria shall extend her solidarity to all the peoples struggling for political and economic liberation, for the right of self-determination and against all forms of racial discrimination.

Article 31

Algeria shall work towards strengthening international cooperation and promoting amicable relations between the states on the basis of equality, mutual interest and non-interference in domestic affairs. She shall adopt the principles and objectives of the United Nations’ Charter.

CHAPTER IV. Rights and Freedoms

Article 32

All citizens shall be equal before the law. No pretext for discrimination on the basis of birth, race, gender, opinion or any other personal or social condition or situation shall be admissible.

Article 33

Algerian nationality shall be defined by the law.

The conditions for the acquisition and retention of the Algerian nationality, its loss, or revocation shall be determined by law.

Article 34

The institutions shall seek to ensure equality of rights and duties of all citizens by removing the obstacles impeding the development of the human personality and preventing the effectual participation of all in the political, economic, social and cultural life.

Article 35

The State shall work towards promoting the political rights of women by increasing their chances of access to representation in elected assemblies.

The modalities of implementing this Article shall be determined by an organic law.

Article 36

The State shall work towards promoting equity in terms of opportunities between men and women in the job market.

The State shall encourage the promotion of women to positions of responsibility in public institutions and administrations, as well as in the enterprises.

Article 37

Youth shall be a living force in building the country.

The State shall attend to generating all the conditions that guarantee the development of their capabilities and stimulate their energies.

Article 38

Fundamental freedoms, human rights and rights of the citizen shall be guaranteed.

They shall constitute the common heritage of all Algerian men and women, who shall assume the task of transmitting it from generation to generation so that they may preserve its integrity and inviolability.

Article 39

Individual and associative defence of the fundamental Human Rights and the individual and collective freedoms shall be guaranteed.

Article 40

The State shall guarantee the inviolability of the human person.

Any form of physical or moral violence or infringement of dignity shall be prohibited.

Brutal, inhumane or degrading treatment shall be punishable by law.

Article 41

Infringements of rights and freedoms as well as any physical or moral attack on the integrity of the human being shall be punishable by law.

Article 42

Freedom of conscience and freedom of opinion shall be inviolable.

Freedom of worship shall be guaranteed in compliance with the law.

Article 43

Freedom of investment and trading shall be acknowledged. It shall be exercised within the statutory framework.

The State shall work towards improving the business environment. It shall encourage the growth of businesses without any discrimination in the service of national economic development.

The State shall regulate the market. The law shall protect the rights of the consumers.

The law shall prohibit monopoly and unfair competition.

Article 44

Freedom of intellectual, artistic and scientific creativity shall be guaranteed to the citizen.

Intellectual property shall be protected by law.

The seizure of any publication, recording or other means of communication and information shall only be effectuated by virtue of a judicial warrant.

Academic freedom and the freedom of scientific research shall be guaranteed and practised within the framework of the law.

The State shall work towards promoting and valorising scientific research to further the Nation’s sustainable development.

Article 45

The right to culture shall be guaranteed for all citizens.

The State shall protect and work towards preserving the tangible and intangible national cultural heritage.

Article 46

The private life and the honour of the citizen shall be inviolable and protected by law.

The secrecy of correspondence and private communications, in all their forms, shall be guaranteed.

It shall be emphatically forbidden to infringe these rights without a reasoned requisition by the judicial authority. The breach of this provision shall be punishable by law.

The protection of individuals when handling personal data shall be a fundamental right guaranteed by law; its violation shall be punishable by law.

Article 47

The State shall guarantee the inviolability of the domicile.

No search can be made, except in compliance with a law and in conformity with its provisions.

A search may only be effectuated by virtue of a warrant issued by the competent judicial authority.

Article 48

Freedoms of expression, association and assembly shall be guaranteed to the citizen.

Article 49

Freedom of peaceful assembly shall be guaranteed to the citizen within the framework of the law stipulating the modalities of its practice.

Article 50

Freedom of the press, be it written, audiovisual or on information networks shall be guaranteed. It shall not be restricted by any form of prior censorship.

This freedom shall not be exploited to infringe upon the dignity, liberty and rights of the others.

The free dissemination of information, ideas, images and opinions shall be guaranteed within the framework of the law and the respect for the basics and religious, moral and cultural values of the Nation.

Press offences shall not incur a custodial sentence.

Article 51

The acquisition and transmission of information, documents and statistics shall be guaranteed to the citizen.

The exercising of this right shall not infringe on the private life and the rights of others, and on the legitimate interests of businesses, as well as the exigencies of national security.

The law shall determine the modalities of exercising this right.

Article 52

The right to establish political parties shall be acknowledged and guaranteed.

However, this right may not be invoked in order to undermine fundamental freedoms, the values and the main constituents of the national identity, the national unity, the security and integrity of the national territory, the independence of the country and the sovereignty of the people, as well as the democratic and republican character of the State.

In accordance with the provisions of the present Constitution, political parties shall not be founded on a religious, linguistic, racial, sexual, corporatist or regional basis.

Political parties may not have recourse to party political propaganda using the elements referred to in the previous paragraph.

Political parties shall be forbidden from having any form of affiliation to foreign interests or parties.

No political party shall resort to violence or constraint, of whatever nature or form.

Other obligations and duties shall be determined by the organic law.

Article 53

In compliance with the provisions of the abovementioned Article 52, the registered political parties shall without any discrimination benefit especially of the following rights:

  • freedom of opinion, expression and assembly;
    airtime in public media outlets proportional to their representation at national level;

    public funding, if appropriate, based on their representation in Parliament, as determined by the law;

    exercising power at local and national levels through democratic alternation in accordance with the provisions of this Constitution.

The law shall determine the modalities of implementing this provision.

Article 54

The right to form associations shall be guaranteed.

The State shall encourage the flourishing of associative movements.

An organic law shall determine the conditions and the modalities pertaining to the creation of associations.

Article 55

Every citizen enjoying all civil and political rights shall have the right to freely choose the place of residence and to move within the national territory.

The right of entry and exit from the national territory shall be guaranteed.

Any restriction of these rights shall only be enforced for a specific period and by virtue of a reasoned decision by the judicial authority.

Article 56

Every person shall be presumed innocent until proven guilty by an ordinary jurisdiction in accordance with a fair trial that ensures all the requisite guarantees for his defence.

Article 57

Underprivileged persons shall have access to legal aid.

The law shall determine the conditions for the implementation of this provision.

Article 58

No person shall be held guilty except by virtue of a law duly promulgated before the perpetration of the incriminated act.

Article 59

No person shall be prosecuted, arrested or detained except in the cases determined by law and in accordance with the forms prescribed by it.

Provisional detention shall be an exceptional measure for which the reasons, period and conditions of its extension are defined by law.

Acts and facts of arbitrary arrest shall be punishable by law.

Article 60

Detention pending a criminal investigation shall be subject to judicial control and shall not exceed forty-eight (48) hours.

Any person remanded in custody shall have the right to get in touch with his family immediately.

Any person remanded in custody shall be informed of his right to contact his lawyer. The exercise of this right may be restricted by the judge in exceptional circumstances specified by law.

Extended pre-charge detention shall only be effectuated as an exceptional measure in accordance with the conditions specified by law.

When the term of custody expires an obligatory medical examination shall be carried out on the person on remand should he so requests; in any case, he shall be informed of this right.

Medical examination shall be mandatory for minors.

The law shall determine the modalities of implementing this provision.

Article 61

Miscarriage of justice shall give rise to compensation by the State.

The law shall determine the conditions and modalities of the compensation.

Article 62

Every citizen meeting the legal requirements shall have the right to vote and to be elected.

Article 63

All citizens shall have equal access to functions and employment in the State, without any conditions other than those stipulated by law.

Exclusive Algerian nationality shall be a prerequisite for access to senior executive positions in government and in politics.

The law shall determine the list of the abovementioned high office and political positions.

Article 64

Private property shall be guaranteed.

The right to inheritance shall be guaranteed.

The holdings of the «waqf» and the foundations shall be acknowledged; their purposes shall be protected by law.

Article 65

The right to education shall be guaranteed.

Public education shall be free within the conditions fixed by law.

Primary education shall be compulsory.

The State shall organise the national education system.

The State shall protect equal access to schooling and vocational training.

Article 66

All citizens shall have the right to healthcare.

The State shall ensure the prevention and the fight against epidemic and endemic diseases.

The State shall work towards generating the conditions of healthcare for the underprivileged.

Article 67

The State shall encourage housing projects.

The State shall work towards facilitating the access to housing for disadvantaged categories.

Article 68

Citizens shall have the right to a healthy environment.

The State shall work towards preserving the environment.

The law shall determine the obligations of natural and legal persons pertaining to the protection of the environment.

Article 69

All citizens shall have the right to work.

The right to protection, security and hygiene at work shall be guaranteed by law.

The right to rest shall be guaranteed. Law shall determine the modalities of its exercise.

The right to social security for workers shall be guaranteed by law.

Employment of children below the age of sixteen (16) shall be punishable by law.

The State shall work towards promoting apprenticeship and putting in place the policies that support job creation.

Article 70

The right to belong to a trade union shall be acknowledged for all citizens.

Article 71

The right to strike shall be acknowledged. It shall be exercised within the framework of the law.

The law may prohibit or restrict the exercise of the right to strike in the fields of national defence and security, or for services and public activities which are of vital interest to the community.

Article 72

The family shall enjoy the protection of the State and society.

The family, society and the State shall protect the rights of children.

The State shall take responsibility for abandoned or non-affiliated children.

The law shall punish violence against children.

The State shall work towards assisting vulnerable persons with special needs in enjoying all the acknowledged rights of the citizens and in gaining social integration.

The family and the State shall protect the elderly.

The conditions and modalities of implementing the current provisions shall be fixed by law.

Article 73

The living conditions of citizens below the legal working age and those who cannot work or can never work again shall be guaranteed.


Article 74

Ignorance of the law is no excuse.

Every person shall respect the Constitution and the laws of the Republic.

Article 75

Every citizen shall assume the duty of protecting and safeguarding the country’s independence and sovereignty, the integrity of its national territory, the unity of its people and all the attributes of the State.

Treason, espionage, defection to the enemy, and all offences committed against the security of the State, shall be punished to the fullest extent of the law.

Article 76

Every citizen shall faithfully undertake his obligations vis-à-vis the national community.

The commitment of the citizen towards his Mother Country and the obligation to contribute to its defence shall be sacred and permanent duties.

The State shall guarantee the respect for the symbols of the Revolution, the memory of the Shouhada’ and the dignity of their dependants and that of the Mujahidin.

The State, furthermore, shall endeavour to promote the writing of history and its teaching to the younger generations.

Article 77

All individual freedoms shall be exercised within the respect of the rights of others recognised by the Constitution; in particular, the respect of the right to honour, privacy and the protection of the family, the youth and childhood.

Article 78

Citizens shall be equal in respect of taxation.

Everyone should participate in the financing of public expenditure according to his ability to contribute.

No tax may be imposed except by reason of a law.

No tax, contribution, excise or right of any kind may be imposed with retroactive effect.

Any action to circumvent the equality of citizens and legal persons as regards taxation is an infringement of the interests of the national community. It shall be punishable by law.

The law shall punish tax evasion and capital flight.

Article 79

Under penalty of prosecution, parents shall have the obligation to ensure the education of their children, and children shall have the duty to provide help and assistance to their parents.

Article 80

The duty of every citizen is to protect public property and the interests of the national community and to respect the property of others.

Article 81

Any foreigner entering the national territory legally shall have his life and property protected in accordance with the law.

Article 82

None shall be extradited except according to and in implementation of the extradition law.

Article 83

In no case shall a political refugee having legally the right of asylum be delivered or extradited.

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