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Thread: Tunisia mourns victims of revolution

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    Default Tunisia mourns victims of revolution

    Tunisia mourns victims of revolution

    AFP, Jan 21, 2011, 08.31pm IST


    Tunisia began national mourning on Friday for the dozens killed in its revolution, a week after the ouster of veteran ruler Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, as new protests called for the old regime to be destroyed.







    TUNIS: Tunisia began national mourning on Friday for the dozens killed in its revolution, a week after the ouster of veteran ruler Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, as new protests called for the old regime to be destroyed.

    Flags flew at half-mast and state television broadcast prayers from the Koran for the 78 people that officials say were killed when security forces cracked down on a wave of social protests that began last month.

    Tunisia's religious affairs ministry said all imams would recite a prayer for "martyrs of the revolution" after Friday prayers in mosques.

    The new transitional government has declared three days of mourning.

    Ben Ali resigned abruptly and fled to Saudi Arabia on January 14 after 23 years in power. The new government has announced major democratic freedoms.

    Hundreds of people rallied in the capital Tunis again on Friday against the inclusion of old regime figures in the new government, calling for a new executive.

    "You stole the wealth of the country but you're not going to steal the revolution! Government resign! We will stay loyal to the blood of the martyrs!" protesters chanted as they marched down the city centre's Avenue Bourguiba.

    Some waved Tunisian flags, others the flag of the main UGTT trade union.

    The UGTT, which played an instrumental role in the wave of protests that led to Ben Ali's ouster, has refused to recognise the new government unveiled on Monday and pulled out its three ministerial appointees.

    "RCD Out!" read one placard at the protest -- a reference to the Ben Ali's former ruling party, which has dominated Tunisian politics since independence from France in 1956 and is one of the most widely hated symbols of the regime.

    One protester held up a sign reading "Our President" next to a photograph of Mohammed Bouazizi, the 26-year-old fruit vendor who inspired the uprising against Ben Ali after setting himself on fire in a protest last month.

    Committees set up by the new leadership to organise democratic elections, investigate the repressions of the old regime and probe corruption allegations against the Ben Ali family were to begin working later Friday.

    Also on Friday dissident journalist Taoufik Ben Brik, who lives in Paris, said he would run in the planned presidential election.

    Moncef Marzouki, another dissident who returned to Tunisia this week after years of exile in Paris, has also said he wants to run.

    No date has been set for the elections but the government has said it expects to hold them within six months. Under the country's constitution, elections should be held in less than two months.

    "The people today are expecting and calling for a settling of scores," the independent daily Le Quotidien said in an editorial.

    But Le Temps, a newspaper owned by a key old regime figure, said: "There has to be a middle way between a security and economic situation that is currently very fragile and the aspirations for freedom and democracy."

    The government earlier ordered the seizure of all assets controlled by the Ben Alis and the RCD party, which has officially expelled Ben Ali from its membership and dissolved its political bureau in a bid for political survival.

    Eight old regime ministers in the new government have also quit the party.

    The European Union is planning to freeze the assets of Ben Ali and his family. A final decision is expected at the end of the month.

    State television reported meanwhile that weapons had been seized in the home of a member of Ben Ali's family, with images showing sniper rifles, pistols and hunting rifles said to have been buried in the garden of his villa.

    Officials on Thursday said that 33 members of Ben Ali's family had been arrested while the government approved a general amnesty bill that would free political prisoners and legalise previously banned political parties.

    Banned political groups include the popular Islamist movement Ennahdha (Awakening), whose leader Rached Ghannouchi, exiled in London, was handed a life sentence by Ben Ali's regime for plotting against the state.

    There has been a gradual return to normality in Tunisia following weeks of turmoil but a state of emergency banning public assemblies remains in place, schools and universities are still shut and there is a curfew at night.

    Social protests meanwhile have continued in poorer central parts of Tunisia.
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    Default Re: Tunisia mourns victims of revolution

    Jumping from the frying pan into the fire

    Egypt is not Tunisia. In Egypt, a middle-aged man tried to light himself on fire in front of the parliament building. In Egypt, sectarian tensions are exploding after the recent attack on a church in Alexandria and the shooting of Coptic train passengers by a policeman in Upper Egypt. In Egypt, there exists a fraudulent parliament and an impending presidential election whose consequences for Egyptian politics are all but certain. In addition to all these problems, Egypt is plagued by unemployment, corruption, injustice, and poverty. No, Egypt is not Tunisia. But the real question is what the future carries for this country.

    Who among us is not concerned about the future? Who does not expect the worst after Alexandria blast? Indeed, this tragedy united Egyptians more than it divided them, but will this be enough? Or will the regime just resort to appeals for calm and deny that sectarianism is in fact a problem, as if there were nothing more to be learned from the attacks? As is denying certain truths will obviate the need to deal with their consequences.

    These fears dominate us as we follow what happens in Tunisia, Algeria, Jordan, Palestine, and even Saudi Arabia, where unemployment protests have spread and, in the Tunisian case, a ruling regime has been brought down. Moments before the government fell, a Tunisian journalist said on satellite TV that despite the gravity of the situation and the loss of life, the protests had to potential to save Tunisia and mark the birth of democracy. A few moments later, the same satellite channel reported the departure of Tunisian president Zine Al-Abidine Ben Ali. It's startling how things begin and how they end.

    The events in Tunisia started with an act of self-immolation and grew into a number of social protests around the country, which quickly turned political as demonstrators refused to accept a renewal of the president’s term. Now, people across the region are taking to the streets to demand their rights, except Egyptians. We find ourselves at a critical juncture, afraid of turning against each other. We’re all concerned that sectarian divisions will be used to obliterate us. This type of animosity grows out of a lack of awareness; most Egyptian youth are not as educated as their Tunisian counterparts. And the Egyptian regime is particular cunning--it has learned to direct public anger away from the state and into other avenues.

    In the past, the Egyptian regime has chosen sectarianism over revolution. Sadat paved the way for the rise of Islamists in order to eliminate the Left, whom he worried would threaten his hold on power. Former President Anwar al-Sadat chose to put Egypt at risk instead of risking his own political position. He combated the Left with the Islamists, the Muslim Brotherhood with the Salafis and, finally, the Copts with both. All these maneuvers saved Sadat’s regime at certain moments, but planted the seeds of sectarianism and deepened the divides between religious communities.

    And what about the security apparatus' role in all this? In dealing with sectarian incidents, security forces have been more intent on protecting the regime than Egyptian society. They have protected Salafi demonstrations against Copts and against the Church, which drew large numbers of people every Friday in Alexandria, until the morning of the attack. And the state-controlled media, by accusing Copts of seeking foreign support to strengthen their domestic standing, has played helped fuel antagonistic feelings towards Egypt’s largest minority group.

    The Egyptian regime has used sectarianism to avert a political unrest. But will sectarianism save the regime from revolution? Or does it threaten the regime as well, not just society?

    Translated from the Arabic Edition.
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    Default Re: Tunisia mourns victims of revolution

    Are the dominoes falling? I think yes.

    America is being inundated by illegal aliens from South America, Central America, China, Islamic countries, other places in Asia.

    Countries in Europe or either collapsing, or fighting among themselves. Ireland has been fighting inside over collapse (too much debt). Greece. Tunisia now.

    I have this... just a feeling... that someone is pushing the right buttons.

    There's only three countries with the power to push the right buttons. USA, Russia and China.

    No other country has the power to cause collapse. Even the EU can't do it - because the EU is a lot of little countries (some are big, ok) - but they aren't a Superpower.

    Russia is still, technically a Superpower. They have the manpower, military and nukes to make themselves a superpower. China is in the same way. So is the US.

    if the US falls, if our economy collapses the rest of the world goes with us.

    If a lot of little countries start becoming war zones, the countries around them become affected to the point they have to spend money to stay OUT of the fray (by upgrading security and even fighting at their own borders).

    So - either a big country goes down and takes the little ones with them - which the USSR basically proved won't destroy the world. OR a lot of little countries start falling apart which in turn PULLS with them the bigger countries who will make efforts to prevent such a thing from occurring.

    I think it will be the latter.

    And I think it is happening now.
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    Default Re: Tunisia mourns victims of revolution

    Tunisia Issues International Arrest Warrant for Ousted President


    Published January 26, 2011
    | Associated Press



    AP
    Jan. 25: A protestor holds a burned picture of former Tunisian President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali during a demonstration in Tunis.

    TUNIS, Tunisia -- Tunisia has issued an international arrest warrant for ousted President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, accusing him of taking [COLOR=blue ! important][COLOR=blue ! important]money[/COLOR][/COLOR] out of the North African nation illegally.
    Ben Ali, who fled to Saudi Arabia after being driven from power this month by violent protests, is also being charged with illegally acquiring real estate and other assets abroad, Justice Minister Lazhar Karoui Chebbi said Wednesday.
    Tunisia is also seeking the arrest of Ben Ali's wife, Leila, as well as other family members. French media have reported that Leila left the country with millions in gold bullion.
    Ben Ali, his wife and their clan have been widely accused of abusing their power to enrich themselves: In France, where family members are believed to have assets ranging from apartments to racehorses, the Paris prosecutors' office has opened a preliminary investigation into their holdings.
    The former president fled Jan. 14 after 23 years in power, pushed out by weeks of protests driven by anger over joblessness, repression and corruption. His swift departure was followed by riots, looting and unrest.


    On Wednesday, the justice minister released figures that highlighted the massive scope of that unrest: Some 11,029 prisoners -- about a third of the country's prison population -- were able to escape amid the chaos, he said.
    Of those, 1,532 prisoners have returned behind bars, he said. Another 74 prisoners died in fires that broke out at several prisons.
    Chebbi spoke to reporters as Tunisian police fired tear gas at hundreds of protesters who have been pressuring the interim government to get rid of old guard ministers who served under Ben Ali.
    The clashes broke out in front of the prime minister's office in Tunis, the capital. Acrid clouds of tear gas engulfed hundreds of people, and some demonstrators responded by throwing stones at police.
    The state news agency TAP said officials are to announce changes to the interim government later Wednesday. The acting premier must replace five ministers who quit their posts, echoing protesters' concerns.
    The caretaker government includes some former opposition leaders, but many top posts -- including prime minister and the ministers of defense, foreign affairs and the interior -- were retained by Ben Ali cronies.
    Prime Minister Mohamed Ghannouchi, who took that post in 1999 under Ben Ali and has kept it through the upheaval, has vowed to quit politics after elections in the coming months. But he insists he needs to stay on for now to guide Tunisia through a transition to democracy.
    Tunisia's so-called "Jasmine Revolution" has sparked scattered protests and civil disobedience in the Middle East and North Africa.
    In Egypt on Tuesday, thousands of anti-government protesters, some hurling rocks, clashed with riot police in Cairo in a Tunisia-inspired demonstration to demand the end of President Hosni Mubarak's nearly 30 years in power.



    Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/world/2011/01...#ixzz1CA3b6093
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    Default Re: Tunisia mourns victims of revolution

    Gonna move the Egypt stuff over to another thread. Post there for Egypt. Give me a few minutes here.

    Rick
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    Default Re: Tunisia mourns victims of revolution

    February 9, 2011

    Tunisia on the No-Call List for More Cruise Lines

    Tweet


    (2:20 p.m. EST) -- After protests and demonstrations led to violence in Tunisia and the ousting of President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, cruise lines have been hesitant to call at the African port. SeaDream Yacht Club is the latest line to revise itineraries based on the unrest, following in the footsteps of lines such as Costa and Disney.

    U.S. and U.K. governments aren't exactly encouraging travel to the country. A travel alert by the U.S. State Department warns travelers that although much of the political and social unrest that has affected Tunis and other major Tunisian cities has diminished, "spontaneous and unpredictable events continue to occur." The alert further states, "While demonstrations have not been directed toward Westerners, U.S. citizens are urged to remain alert to local security developments and to be vigilant regarding their personal security."

    While the U.K.'s Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) also acknowledges that it is "possible to have a trouble free visit," it suggests that travelers should still exercise caution. "Following the departure of the former President, a State of Emergency was declared on the afternoon of 14 January and this remains in place. The political situation in Tunisia is undergoing rapid and dramatic change. There were street protests and violence prior to and following the departure of former President Ben Ali. While all major groups have ended their demonstrations, further unrest remains possible. The situation could last some months," the FCO warns.

    Want to know if your cruise ship plans on visiting Tunisia or canceling its calls? Here's what we know so far.

    Costa: A statement from Costa representative Buck Banks affirms that the line has canceled all calls in Tunisia. On Mediterranean sailings, passengers will now visit Palma de Mallorca, Malta or Cagliari (Sardinia) instead of Tunisia. Passengers are being given the option to either rebook on select sailings, use a voucher to book another 2011 sailing or receive a refund according to the terms of their individual contracts.

    Disney Cruise Line: Disney Magic will not be calling in Tunis during its upcoming Mediterranean season from May to September. The regularly scheduled calls in Tunis will be replaced with calls in Palermo, Italy. "We continually evaluate our itineraries and the decision to modify this itinerary was made in part due to the changing political environment in Tunis and the recent travel alert issued by the U.S. Department of State," said Disney spokeswoman Christie Erwin Donnan.

    Louis Cruises: On Louis Cruises' March 4 eight-night "Tunis, Malta, Italy" sailing, Tunis will be scrapped for Katakolon.

    SeaDream Yacht Club: SeaDream has revised the itinerary for SeaDream II's May 18 cruise, sailing roundtrip from Rome. Instead of visiting La Goulette (Tunis), the ship will visit Xlendi on Gozo Island, Malta, instead. In a company statement, SeaDream's president Bob Lepisto said, "Based upon the tension in Tunisia, we feel the safety and security there remains uncertain. For that reason, we have elected not to call on the port of La Goulette (Tunis), Tunisia."

    Voyages to Antiquity: The line has announced that two scheduled sailings -- "Carthage Must Be Destroyed" and "Everything in Alexandria Was Superlative," each with port calls in Egypt and/or Tunisia -- have been scrapped. Instead, Voyages to Antiquity will be offering a new Athens-to-Rome cruise April 4-18. Passengers booked on the original sailings can choose to book the new itinerary, to book a different sailing later in the year or a full refund.

    A few lines with Tunisia calls in the upcoming months are taking a wait-and-see approach. Holland America spokeswoman Mary Schimmelman tells us that "since our first scheduled call in Tunisia is not until May 3, 2011, no changes to published itineraries have been announced, however, the situation is being closely monitored. As always: Should an itinerary change be necessary, travel agents and guests will be notified closer to the affected sailing date."

    MSC Cruises' first 2011 call in Tunisia is scheduled for April. "We're still monitoring the situation and any developments, but our technical department has already begun researching alternative itineraries should the situation remain unchanged and prevent us from calling in Tunisia," says spokeswoman Julianne Carelli.

    We are still awaiting updates from Regent Seven Seas Cruises and Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd.'s lines.

    --by Erica Silverstein, Senior Editor
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    Default Re: Tunisia mourns victims of revolution

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/...75430420110605


    Death toll from Tunisian clashes reaches 11
    TUNIS | Sun Jun 5, 2011 4:47pm EDT

    (Reuters) - Eleven people have died in two days of clashes between rival clans in the Tunisian mining town of Metlaoui, state television said Sunday, with shops looted and set on fire.

    People fought battles with homemade bombs, guns and iron bars in the town, about 400 km (250 miles) southwest of the capital, after rumours circulated that only certain tribes would be offered jobs at the nearby Gafsa phosphate complex.

    Army units were on their way to try to halt the fighting and military helicopters were deployed over the town.

    "People are scared," Ahmed Achouri, a Metlaoui resident, told Reuters by telephone. "We are in a real war ... we ask for more security."

    State-run media had earlier put the death toll at seven but state television later said 11 people had been killed and more than 100 wounded in the violence.

    Tunisia triggered what has become known as the Arab Spring when popular protests forced autocratic leader Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali from power in January. Since then the country's new leaders have struggled to restore stability.

    Authorities have lengthened a nightly curfew in Metlaoui, which will now run from 4 p.m. (1400 GMT) until 6 a.m., the TAP state-run news agency reported.

    Another Metlaoui resident, Hedi Radaoui, told Reuters security forces had arrested dozens of people and seized guns and knives.


    (Reporting by Tarek Amara; editing by Jon Boyle)


    Saint Paul in the Ephesians 6:12


    "For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms."



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