As everyone probably knows, being openly LGBT in Algeria is nearly impossible, as it is legally impossible (the fine is between 500 and 10 000 DA and the jail sentence between 2 months to 3 years), and hate crimes against LGBT people aren’t uncommon either. This legal situation and this highly homophobic and transphobic context makes it impossible for people living in Algeria to have any big pride celebration. That’s why we have TenTen.
TenTen (10th of October) is a day that celebrates being both LGBT and Algerian, this is about affirming that we exist and that one part of our identity doesn’t have to deny the other. This is a silent celebration where at 8 pm we light a candle, and (eventually) post its picture on facebook, as a way to be a bit more visible and eventually break the loneliness that comes with being LGBT and closeted in a country that’s so unsafe and violent.
So today i’d like to raise some awareness about the situation in Algeria, i’d like to remind LGBT Algerians that they are not alone (and that things are slowly changing, be-shwiyya be-shwiyya*), and i‘d like to remind the French of their responsibility in the suffering and death of LGBT Algerians who were expulsed from France and sent back to Algeria*.
To my brothers and sisters in Maghreb in general, i wish you joy, safety and love. insha’allah, things will be ok for all of us ❤
* : For instance, an algerian movie about a trans woman was shown in an Algerian cinema a few years ago, which would have not been possible before. I spoke with the director and he told me that people reacted to it positively, overall.
* : In the nineties (although this prob happened before and after as well), France would expulsed algerian trans women sex workers, still in their work clothes, knowing damn well that landing in Algeria dressed like that was like a death sentence for them.