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Tunisia

Tunisian Journalists’ Union Announces General Strike On April 2

Journalists in Tunisia will go on a nationwide general strike on April 2 to protest governmental interference in public media and to defend the freedom of speech and freedom of the press in the country. The National Syndicate for Tunisian Journalists (SNJT), Tunisia’s main journalists’ union, announced on Wednesday, March 23, that it has approved a mass strike by journalists. Union official Amira Mohammed cited the “president’s attempts to control public media and the authorities’ insistence on hitting the sector” as the main reason for the strike. The journalists’ union has criticized president Kais Saied and his regime for a number of recent measures which according to them drastically reduced the independence of state media.

Tunisians Protest Authoritarian Moves By President Kais Saied

This past weekend, protests calling for the resignation of President Kais Saied were organized in Tunisia’s capital Tunis. Protesters also rejected the online consultation poll started by the current interim government in January to invite public suggestions and amendments after the president announced the holding of a referendum in July to replace the current constitution with a new one. General elections governed by the new constitution are scheduled later in December. On Saturday March 19, a major left opposition party, the Workers’ Party of Tunisia organized a rally on Habib Bourguiba street in central Tunis in defiance of the decision of the governor to ban protest actions on the street. They also condemned President Saied’s moves to consolidate authoritarian, individual rule.

​Women And Labor: Key Struggles In The MENA Region

How do women and gender equality measures advance in a context of conflict, climate change, high unemployment, low labor force participation, limited democratization and a pandemic? These are challenges facing the Arab region as many citizens, women’s rights organizations, some governments and external partners seek wide-ranging institutional changes and an improved environment for women’s participation and rights. Surveys show public support for some — but not all — proposals for gender equality. Equal inheritance rights for women, for example, remain off the table, even in progressive Tunisia. Family laws that confer most privileges to men and place women under the guardianship of male kin or the spouse are difficult to change.

Rebel Cities 18: Eight Years After Jasmine Revolution, Jemna Is Tunisia’s Oasis Of Hope

Eight years ago on Monday, Tunisia's dictator President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali fled the country as the people declared a revolution that ushered in the Arab Spring. The struggle for democracy still continues today in the north African nation, and radical municipalism plays an important, often undiscussed role – particularly in Jemna. Jemna is a south Tunisian oasis famous for its 'deglet nour' (“dates of light”), fruits that have long nourished locals. Jemna is also gaining a reputation as a beacon of people power. Tunisia continues to lead the region with socially progressive momentum, especially in comparison to the extreme violence and bloody aftermath of other democratic uprisings across the Middle East since 2011.

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman Arrives In Tunisia Amid Protests Against Him

TUNIS (Reuters) - Hundreds of Tunisians staged the first protests of the Arab world against Saudi Arabia’s crown prince as he arrived on a visit on Tuesday, denouncing him as a murderer involved in the killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi. People chant slogans and hold banners as they take part in a protest, opposing the visit of Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in Tunis, Tunisia, November 27, 2018. REUTERS/Zoubeir Souiss. The protests were a rare occurrence for Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the kingdom’s de facto ruler who faces no overt criticism at home and who received lavish receptions earlier in his tour in visits to Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and Egypt.

The Tunisian Inspiration: Countering Authoritarianism With Social Justice Unionism

Looking around the world today, it may seem bleak: crackdowns on civil liberties and worker rights are happening everywhere: Cambodia, Colombia, Egypt, Hungary, Turkey, the United States and elsewhere. Yet whenever and wherever basic rights are under attack, there always will be people resisting. The question for unions is: Will the labor movement be a part of that resistance—or not? In Tunisia, unions answered with a resounding, “Yes!”

IMF Is Choking Tunisia. No Wonder People Are Protesting

Tunisia has been facing protests across the country at price and tax rises since 3 January – the anniversary of the “bread riots” which occurred in 1984 under the Habib Bourguiba regime. As with the current unrest, that uprising was triggered by an intervention into the country’s affairs by international financial institutions, and the subsequent shock to the livelihoods of Tunisians – specifically, an increase in bread and grain prices following the adoption of an IMF plan. It is impossible to understand these latest protests without understanding the role of international financial institutions, especially the IMF, in imposing austerity on Tunisia since the popular uprising of January 2011. In the months after the revolution, western governments and institutions were looking for a way to prevent countries from questioning the neoliberal model.

Media’s Wildly Different Take On Unrest In Tunisia And Iran

TUNIS, TUNISIA — As the new year began, social media and corporate-owned news organizations alike were giving the protests in Iran constant coverage, despite the fact that the protests were relatively small in size and motivated primarily by economics — not politics, as many popular news outlets had claimed. Not surprisingly, these same organizations failed to mention the role of sanctions backed by the West in fomenting the economic troubles facing Iranians. Soon after — despite U.S. encouragement and financial backing, as well as the key role of the U.S.-trained, Iran-based terrorist group MEK, in fomenting the unrest — the protests in Iran fizzled. It was difficult to know this if one relied exclusively upon corporate media reports, which claimed that the protests were growing by the minute...

Mass Protests Against Austerity, Unemployment Shake Tunisia

Tunisia has erupted over the past three days in demonstrations and violent clashes with security forces. Workers and youth have taken to the streets in at least 18 different towns in protest against a 2018 austerity budget that will only exacerbate prevailing conditions of mass unemployment, poverty and social inequality in the North African nation. The Interior Ministry acknowledged that a 55-year-old man was killed during a protest on Monday in the town of Tebourba, about 20 miles outside of the capital of Tunis, and five other people there were wounded. There were conflicting reports over the cause of death, with some protesters saying the man had been run down by a police vehicle, while the authorities claimed he had been overcome by tear gas. In a number of areas, the army has been called out to back up local security forces and protect government buildings and banks.

Tunisia: On Frontlines Of Struggle Against Climate Change

By Hamza Hamouchene for ROAR Magazine - Kerkennah is a group of islands lying off the east coast of Tunisia in the Gulf of Gabès, around 20km away from the mainland city of Sfax. The two main islands are Chergui and Gharbi. When approaching the islands by ferry, one is struck by a curious sight: the coastal waters are divided into countless parcels, separated from one another by thousands of palm tree leaves. This is what Kerkennis call charfia, a centuries-old fishing method ingeniously designed to lure fish into a capture chamber from where they can be easily recovered.

Look South: Hollande’s Terror Blunder Is Tunisia, Not Syria

By Staff of Tele Sur - After the Paris attacks of Nov. 13, French President Francois Hollande didn’t flinch before looking east to Syria. Terrorism, he said, must be demolished there. All eyes then followed his gaze: to French history in Syria, French intervention in Syria, French interests in Syria. In highlighting the east, though, Hollande is distracting spectators from its more relevant history, intervention and interests south: in Tunisia.

The Second Tunisian Revolution

By Giuliana Sgrena for Il Manifesto - Five years after the Arab Spring that shook the Middle East and North Africa, Tunisia is bursting up in flames again. The images that arrived from the city of Sfax, where a young merchant set himself on fire Wednesday after his goods were confiscated by the authorities, is reminiscent of the self-immolation of Mohamed Bouazizi, whose act kicked off the Tunisian Revolution on Dec. 17, 2010. This time, the protest started from Kasserine, in central Tunisia not far from Sidi Bouzid, after a 24 year old young man, Ridha Yahyaoui, who was threatening to kill himself because his name had been deleted from a list of hirings, got struck and died when climbing an electricity pole.

More Than 1,000 Arrested During Tunisia Unrest

By Staff of Middle East Eye - Over 1,000 people have been arrested during nine days of fierce anti-government protest in Tunisia, authorities said on Monday as the security forces union launched a mass demonstration. Three hundred of those detained were arrested for breaking a strict curfew put in place nationwide on Friday after widespread looting and rioting broke out, according to a statement from the Interior Ministry on Monday. A total of 1,105 people have been arrested, said ministry spokesperson Walid Louguini, with 538 people detained over the weekend for looting.

Tunisians Continue Resistance 5 Years After Arab Spring

By Yasmine Ryan for Independent - Like most of his friends, Ammar Buthifi, 27, has spent the years since Tunisia kick-started the Arab Spring in much the same way as the years before: unemployed. Five years on from the Tunisian uprising, the mass unemployment that fuelled those protests has, if anything, worsened, and fresh unrest is threatening stability in the country heralded as the Arab Spring success story. Mr Buthifi’s father, a builder, gives him two or three dinars a day, if he’s lucky – less than £1. It is barely enough for the espresso and few cigarettes he has as he idles away his time in cafés with his friends.

Tunisia Invokes Curfew In Face Of Growing Unemployment Protests

By Staff of The Huffington Post - KASSERINE, Tunisia (AP) — Tunisia imposed a nationwide overnight curfew Friday in response to growing unrest as protests over unemployment across the country descended into violence in some cities. A curfew from 8 p.m. until 5 a.m. has been put into place because the attacks on public and private property "represent a danger to the country and its citizens," the Interior Ministry said. On Thursday night, police stations came under attack and security officers used tear gas to repel protesters armed with stones and Molotov cocktails.
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