New Tunisia protests over unemployment

Nearly a decade after the revolution that toppled Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, the government has yet to resolve regional inequalities. (File/AFP)
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Updated 11 July 2020

New Tunisia protests over unemployment

  • “Either we get a better life or we all die,” demonstrators, including women, could be heard shouting, according to the reports
  • Nearly a decade after the revolution that toppled Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, the government has yet to resolve regional inequalities

TUNIS: Hundreds of Tunisians demonstrated in the south of the country on Saturday against unemployment and the death of a young man they say was killed by soldiers earlier this week.
Protesters in the town of Remada demanded that President Kais Saied visit their region to discuss their living conditions, witnesses told AFP and videos published online showed.
“Either we get a better life or we all die,” demonstrators, including women, could be heard shouting, according to the reports.
“We want to see President Kais Saied. We voted for him and he must come here to Remada to hear us out and see how our children are being killed,” a woman seen in one video said.
On Tuesday night, a young man suspected of being a smuggler was killed during a police operation in the town, which is close to the border with conflict-riddled Libya.
The defense ministry has opened an investigation to determine if he died when soldiers opened fire on four vehicles transporting smuggled goods from Libya.
Southern Tunisia is one of the country’s most marginalized regions, with above-average unemployment, failing infrastructure and a stunted private sector.
Nearly a decade after the revolution that toppled Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, the government has yet to resolve regional inequalities.
In recent weeks, protests have also rocked the southern town of Tataouine, some 80 kilometers (50 miles) from Remada, with demonstrators demanding the government honor a 2017 pledge to invest millions to develop the region and provide jobs to thousands.
Protesters in Tataouine have blocked roads and sought to prevent trucks from accessing the remote El-Kamour pumping station in the desert outside the town.
“The situation in the south of Tunisia is unacceptable,” Saied said in a video published Thursday on the presidency’s official Facebook page.
Saied, who had focused on Tunisia’s disenfranchised youth during his 2019 election campaign, said protests were “legitimate” as long as they respected the law.


Algeria to lift some travel curbs, shorten curfew

Updated 08 August 2020

Algeria to lift some travel curbs, shorten curfew

  • In June, Algeria resumed some economic activity, mainly in the construction and public works sectors
  • The new measures include lifting a travel ban between 29 provinces until the end of the month

ALGIERS: Algeria will further ease its coronavirus lockdown on Sunday, shortening an overnight curfew and lifting some travel curbs, the government said.
The North African country has recorded 34,155 coronavirus infections and 1,282 deaths.
In June, Algeria resumed some economic activity, mainly in the construction and public works sectors, and allowed the reopening of some businesses.
The new measures include lifting a travel ban between 29 provinces until the end of the month. A curfew for those provinces will be shortened to 11 p.m. to 6 a.m. from 8 p.m. to 5 a.m. during the same period, the government said.
The authorities in July ended curfew and travel restrictions for the remaining 19 provinces.