Category Archives: Tunisia

Tunisia: 90% public sector workers on strike

On Thursday November 22, the deputy general secretary of the UGTT (Tunisia General Federation of Workers) reported that the number of public sector workers on strike responding to the appeal of the unions affiliated to the UGTT was close to 90%. Except hospital emergency wards, all the public sectors were at a standstill.

Tunisia: protesting austerity, demanding sovereignty

by Hamza Hamouchene

The recent protests show that Tunisia is still a cauldron of popular resistance against neoliberal and neo-colonial attacks on the country’s sovereignty.

Around 800 people were arrested, dozens were injured and at least one person was killed in a violent police crackdown on the protests that rocked Tunisia for over two weeks in January. The protesters, who stemmed from a wide variety of social and economic backgrounds, took to the streets in response to the government’s announcement of its 2018 budget. A new round of harsh austerity measures are predicted to inflate prices of basic foods, fuel and energy and to further undermine crucial public services such as health care and education.

Tunisia: January, the month of logical revolts

by Fausto Giudice

It was predictable, it was foreseen and it happened: Tunisia exploded from below on Monday, the 8th of January.

In all parts of the country, marginalised youths attacked police stations, supermarkets, authorities – tax centres, municipalities, governorates – and blocked trains, and clashed with police and the military, who made generous use of tear gas. A 43-year-old man, Khomsi Yafreni, was killed in Tebourba on Monday night and his funeral on Tuesday gave rise to further clashes. The Interior Ministry has denied that he was killed by the police. 800 “rioters” were arrested. The reaction of the government and the official media was lamentably unanimous: they did not speak of protests, but of riots instigated by thugs and bandits. “There are no protests at night”, was the sentence issued by Prime Minister Youssef Chahedh, who promised that “2018 will be the last difficult year for Tunisia”. We would like to believe it.

Tunisie: 6 ans après une quasi-révolution, un interrègne qui n’en finit pas

Fausto Giudice

6 ans, ce n’est rien quand on a 90 ans. Mais quand on en a entre 20 et 30, c’est long. Il y a six ans, le peuple tunisien a vu lui échapper un dictateur de bas étage, que l’ambassade US a fait en sorte d’évacuer vers un exil doré à l’ombre des derricks saoudiens. Ce que les médias européens se sont empressés de baptiser stupidement « révolution de jasmin » (expression qu’il n’est jamais venu à l’esprit des Tunisiens d’utiliser) a très vite dégagé un parfum de pourriture. Les politicards ont habilement repris les choses en main et ont concocté une issue dans le plus pur esprit du Guépard : « Nous changerons tout pour que rien ne change ».

Will Chinese currency swap help Egypt face dollar crisis?

by George Mikhail

Egypt is still struggling with its dollar shortage. It has sought to face the shortage through a series of decisions, the last of which entailed floating the exchange rate on Nov. 3. But the crisis persists, thus pushing Egypt to seek another currency that would reduce demand for the dollar. The choice has fallen on the Chinese yuan in the country’s battle against the dollar.