Tunisia: The Jasmine Revolution

Tunisia demonstration - .jpg

In 2011, Tunisia became ground zero for the “Arab Spring,” a wave of pro-democracy protests that spread through the Middle East and toppled multiple governments. However, five years after the fall of Tunisia's last dictator, protests and popular discontent continue to denounce corruption, economic stagnation, high unemployment, and police violence.

In July 2015, an amnesty bill was introduced in parliament. The bill would grant amnesty to former officials guilty of corruption and embezzlement under the previous regime, on the condition that they returned the funds. The National Reconciliation Act caused a mass outcry and was removed from parliamentary debate due to the protests, but it was re-introduced in late June 2016, triggering once again mass protests.

Expectations are also high for the new Prime Minster to deliver on promises of increased economic prosperity, which have been slow to materialize over the last five years. 

 

Further Readings: 

New Tunisian Prime Minister tries to break economic reform curse. Gulf Business. 13 August 2016. 
Article on several of the current challenges facing Tunisia. 

Tunisia: Amnesty Bill Would Set Back Transition. Human Rights Watch. 14 June 2016.
Explanation of the affects that the amnesty bill for corruption in the old regime would have. 

Tunisia’s ripple effect: What will happen after the Kasserine protests?. Al Bawaba. 31 January 2016. 
In-depth article about the regional differences in Tunisia and how these affect protests. 

Anti-Reconciliation Act Protests Dominate Tunis City Center. Tunisia Live. 26 July 2016.
Coverage of recent protest over the amnesty bill and corruption.