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1. Geography
2. Political situation
3. Defense
4. Economy
a. Figures
b. Currency
5. Health
6. Education
a. Universities
7. Demographics
8. Religions
a. Freedom
9. Peoples
10. Languages
11. Human rights
12. History
13. Cities and Towns

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Index / Religions
Open map of AlgeriaAlgeria /

Figures in 1000.
33,000 99.8%
32,850 99.3%
150 0.5%
80 0.2%
Roman Catholic
35 0.1%
2 <0.1%
45 0.1%
2 <0.1%
1 <0.1%

Islam is the totally dominant religion of Algeria, the official figures show that 100% of the population is Muslim. Islam is the state religion since the 1960's, and legislation must not contradict Islamic regulations.
Algeria had more than 1 million Christians before independence, heavy migration in the 1960's have caused this to fall to about 0.2% today. As a country that has been dominated by Western culture and learning, however, research has proven that this has led to a certain percentage of Atheists. An estimated 2-3% Atheists would probably be correct for Algeria.

In Algeria it is Sunni Islam that holds the ground. Islam is a political force in Algeria, where three views dominate. The Islamist view regards Islam as a holistic religion, embracing all aspects of life, public and private. The secular view, which seems to claim most followers, considers Islam a guideline, and allows more freedom to deviate than Islamism does. The third view is the traditional, the one most common among elderly and people in rural areas. This view is somewhere between Islamism and secularism, but unlike these two, involves scepticism towards modern society.
Algerian Islam includes the cult of maraboutism, holy men and women, that were preachers, and whose graves have become religious centres and sometimes destinations for small-scale pilgrimages.
In Berber communities, there are many examples of extra-Islamic religious practices, practices that hardly any scholar would claim to be part of popular Islam, but which rather are surviving elements from Berber religion. The rain cult of the male deity Anzar is the foremost example of this.
Islamism is a strong force in Algeria, and the conflict between the groups supporting the elite, and groups supporting the Islamic leaders tossed the country into the Algerian Civil War during most of the 1990's.

Over recent years, there have been several cases of trials of individuals promoting Christianity in Algeria, as well as alleged cases of harassment from officials.
Reports indicate that Christianity has grown in Algeria, in particular during the Algerian Civil War in the 1990's.

Before independence, there were about 140,000 Jews in Algeria. Almost all of these left in the 1960's, most leaving for France, not Israel. There is a small number of Jews left, but information is scant.

By Tore Kjeilen