Algerien: Louisa Hanoun

Achieving peace in my country, Algeria, and in the entire world is my utmost ambition.

— Louisa Hanoun

Louisa Hanoun has been the leader of the Algerian Workers Party since 1990. She is a human rights activist and key member of the opposition in Algeria and has argued in favor of a peaceful solution to the Algerian civil war through roundtable dialogue between warring factions and the government. In 2004 Louisa Hanoun was nominated by the Party as presidential candidate. She has endured arrest and imprisonment, yet has remained faithful to her political stands and humanist principles.

For Louisa Hanoun peace is a centripetal force, the very foundation of life on which all other human ambitions are built. She expresses her perspective of peace in her war-torn country, Algeria, saying, "Peace is my highest priority and a prerequisite on top of my electoral agenda for the presidency office. Peace has been our aim since 1992. We have emphasized this aim continuously. We want to restore confidence and hope to Algerians, curb violence and put an end to the guerrilla war that is being fueled under the cloak of terrorism and religious fundamentalism. We want to end this vicious hollow circle, so as to alleviate the suffering of the people after seven years of violence. This manifesto of peace will sound salutary enough to gentle people everywhere, but the true impact of these words can only be fully felt by citizens of a country in which no family has been untouched by violence. Each orphan, each widow, each gang victim is longing for an end to this bloodshed." Louisa Hanoun has campaigned tirelessly for human rights, demanding that a new constitution be drafted, stipulating the irreversible adoption of democracy. Although she ran for president, she appears to be quite free of personal ambition, driven more by her sense of responsibility than the usual aspirations of a politician’s ego. Having said she would support any candidate who has the same perspective on peace, she identifies the insidious process of privatization as a real cause of poverty that fuels violence: "My aim is to rescue the country from the present cycle of terror, and to see peace and true democracy prevailing in Algeria."

Algerian Workers Party Algerian Parliament (AP) The Algerian Association for Human Rights