Tunisia. Violent crows erupted in December after a young unemployed academic, Mohammed Bouazizi, set fire to himself in protest of police seizing the vegetables he sold in the absence of a job. Bouazizi was killed by the burns and several people were killed in the subsequent demonstrations against unemployment. Four opposition movements – Ettajdid (Renewal), Democratic Forum for Work and Freedom (FDTL) and two newly formed groups – were reported June 10 to have joined the Alliance for Citizenship and Equality. According to COUNTRYAAH, Tunisia has a population of 11.57 million (2018). The alliance, which combined various forms of socialism and social democracy, among others, invited a national dialogue on a transition to democracy.
Eight people were sentenced July 10 to prison sentences of up to twelve years for encouraging terrorism. Two of them were sentenced in their absence since moving abroad, one reportedly to Sweden. The others claimed that they had been tortured to be admitted to what they were accused of. About 1,000 people were in Tunisian detention centers and prisons, accused or convicted of planning to join jihadists in Iraq in particular.
In an attempt to curb the so-called Jasmine Revolution, which was now mainly directed at Prime Minister Ghannouchi and former party faithful governors and chiefs of police around the country, Parliament on February 9 passed emergency legislation giving President Fouad Mebazaa far-reaching powers. He declared that all parties would become legal in a matter of days and that Tunisia would ratify a host of international treaties that otherwise would have been outside the country. Among other things. ICC, the treaties against torture and degrading treatment and the Human Rights Convention’s supplement to political and social rights. The curfew was lifted on February 15, although other parts of the state of emergency remained in effect. Meanwhile, the show continued around the country with the old representatives of Ben Ali and RCD. On February 27, Ghannouchi was finally forced to resign as prime minister. He was replaced by Beji Caid el Sebsi. Sebsi was born in 1926 and was 84 years old. From the country’s independence in 1956, he occupied key posts under Bourguiba and then Ben Ali. The opposition therefore regarded him as a continuation of the RCD regime.
The deposition of Ben Ali was officially welcomed by the United States and the European Union, though both have for decades maintained close relations with the dictator and his kleptocracy. Among other things. In January it was revealed that the French Foreign Minister had been flown around Tunisia in December on President Ben Ali’s private plane during a holiday in the country. Both the US and the EU fear that the introduction of democracy in Tunisia will lead to a government that will not as uncritically support the US and EU interests in the Middle East and North Africa. Even worse, however, was that the rebellion Tunisia spread to Egypt, Morocco, Jordan, Yemen, Bahrain and Libya who all housed dictators who served the US and EU political interests in the area.
In March-June, hundreds of thousands of refugees from Libya poured into Tunisia. A large number of them were guest workers who had worked in Libya and were now being reprisaled during the civil war between the Libyan government and rebels.
In October elections were held for the country’s constitutional assembly. The major victor of the election became the right-wing and moderately Islamist Ennahda party, which got 37% of the vote. 14 other parties got elected members, but they all got less than 10% of the vote. Eight independent candidates were elected, but almost a third of the votes went to lists that did not obtain representation. The election was a big disappointment for the country’s secular forces, which pointed to Ennahda’s electoral victory, among other things. was due to massive funding from the Islamist dictatorships around the Persian Gulf.
In December 2011, Moncef Marzouki of the secular party CPR was elected President of the Constitutional Assembly with 155 votes in favor, 3 against and 42 blank. Marzouki is a trained medical doctor and in 1993 founded a human rights organization in protest against the Ben Ali regime’s attack on the opposition. In 2001, he formed a political party, which was immediately banned. Marzouki went into exile in France and only returned in 2011 after Ben Ali’s departure. Immediately after his accession, President Hamadi Jebali from Ennahda appointed to the post of Prime Minister.
In May 2012, the Justice Department dismissed 82 judges and accused them of corruption. Nine of them were probably reinstated in their posts 1 month later, but in September, the Supreme Judicial Council removed or moved 700 judges. The Judicial Council lived its own life when the Constitutional Assembly could not agree to replace the remnants of Ben Ali’s time with a transitional council. Not until April 2013 did the Assembly appoint a Supreme Counsel to appoint, promote, transfer and discipline the nation’s judges – pending a new constitution.