Boualem Sansal is honored as a voice for democratic diversity

Peace Prize of the German Publishers and Booksellers Association goes to Algerian author

With Boualem Sansal, the German Book Trade Association honors Algeria's voice for democratic diversity, says the Society for Threatened Peoples (STP). In October 2011, Sansal will be awarded the Peace Prize of the German Publishers and Booksellers Association. "In his novels, the author has always mentioned the criticism of the non-Arab Algerian population toward the systematic Arabization in Algeria – even though he is not a Kabyle himself," the STP's expert on questions regarding Africa, Ulrich Delius, commented in Göttingen on Thursday. In his literary work, Sansal offers a profound view upon the non-Arab culture of the Masir (Berber), to which the Kabyle – the largest population group in Algeria – belong. Around 10 million of about 33 million Algerian citizens belong to the Masir.

As a senior member of the Algerian Ministry of Industry, Sansal was suspended from his office, because he refused to silently accept the government's Arabization-policy. In view of the STP, the award is a sign of hope for the Kabyle, that Algeria's non-Arab population and the democracy movement will finally receive more attention in Germany.