Tunisia Protester Shot Dead by Police

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Al-Akhbar Management

Published Monday, February 9, 2015

A man was shot dead on Sunday in clashes between demonstrators and security forces in the southern Tunisian town of Dhiba, near the border with Libya, during a protest over the economy, witnesses said.

While countries such as Libya and Syria have been torn apart by the violence, Tunisia itself avoided the worst of the chaos and remains relatively stable.

However, many Tunisians are still frustrated about the lack of growth, high unemployment and rising prices.

Protests in Dhiba started two days ago over taxes imposed on local traders, with residents demanding more opportunities and jobs. Witnesses said police fired bullets and teargas to disperse crowds who had burned a police station in the city.

"A youth was shot dead by security forces ... there are many others injured," said Kamal Abdultif, a local union official.

On Friday, A secular-led coalition government that includes Islamists took office in Tunisia, three months after the North African state's first free parliamentary elections.

It faces a delicate balancing act. While international lenders want it to curb high public spending, including by cutting politically sensitive subsidies on basic foods and fuel, many Tunisians fret over living costs and the economic outlook.

Prime Minister Habib Essid, who took the oath of office Friday in front of President Beji Caid Essebsi, vowed to fight for greater democracy and greater regional stability, four years after a revolution ousted longtime dictator Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, and against rampant unemployment.

(AFP, Al-Akhbar)

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