Protests in Tunisia after several nights of clashes

Protests in Tunisia after several nights of clashes

Hundreds of young Tunisians demonstrated on Tuesday in Tunis and Sfax (center) to protest against poverty and political class after four nights of unrest due to deep social crisis.

On January 14, 2011, unrest broke out in several areas on Friday, the next day of the tenth anniversary of Zein el Abidin Ben Ali, who was ousted from power by the mob. On Monday, the Ministry of the Interior reported more than 600 arrests.

Responding specifically to calls made on social networks, several hundred youths gathered in Tunis and Sfax on Tuesday, imposing sanctions on the gathering for health reasons.

On Habib Borguiba Avenue, Tunis’s main artery, the 2011 revolution was accompanied by slogans against the government and police, such as “People want the collapse of the regime”.

“Frustration has become widespread. The virus has been added to poverty and unemployment. Ten years later (Revolution, editor’s note), our demands have not been met” in Tunis.

– “We want our rights” –

The protesters – mostly students – who wanted to reach the interior ministry were repealed by the police, widely deployed on revenue on Thursday.

Ghazi Tiyari, a member of civil society, said, “We do not want to destroy or steal our rights. We do not want to leave this government, and we will not stop before this government.”

Nocturnal unrest has spread since Friday, despite curfew from 8pm onwards, to try to stem the novel coronovirus epidemic. With occasional demonstrations during the day, these protests do not present clear political demands and were influenced by looting.

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After several days of silence, Prime Minister Hichme Mechichi, Minister of Interior Affairs, on Tuesday condemned the “robbery and theft” on Facebook.

He said the unrest in the border areas had “nothing to do with peaceful protests (…)”.

The day before, President Cass Syed was widely elected in 2019 with the support of young people, asking them to attack people or property in defense of “the right to work for freedom, freedom and for” Do not. Garima ”, chanting the 2011 revolution.

During the night from Monday to Tuesday, hundreds of youths from several areas in the suburbs of Tunis hurled stones and Molotov cocktails at police officers stationed in the force, who released large amounts of tear gas.

According to an AFP correspondent, in the country’s second largest city of Sfax, protesters set fire to tires and cut roads.

On Sunday evening, the Ministry of Defense announced the deployment of the army to protect some public buildings.

– “Refuse” –

These skirmishes have occurred when epidemics have destroyed thousands of jobs in key areas of tourism, but have disorganized many families, even without compensatory income, in the catering or aeronautical subcontinent.

“There is denial and underestimation of anger among young people, especially because eleven successive governments (after the fall of Ben Ali) did not have a strategy to answer the central question of employment,” said Olama Lamaloum, director of the NGO International Alert in Tunisia , Which works in the most marginal areas of the country.

“As long as there is a purely security response, there are mass arrests, and no social or political backlash,” Ms Lamaloum said, tensions will remain high.

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Very divided, political leaders accused each other of stopping the conflict to destabilize the country.

The government, formed with difficulty in September and awaits a massive reshuffle on Saturday.

Political instability and lack of economic prospects, coupled with a historic drop in GDP of 9% announced for 2021, led to an increase in illegal departures in Europe, where Tunisians are now seizing on the main nationality of Italian Costa.

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