Tunisian opposition activists gather momentum
Tunisians shout slogans against the ruling Ennahda Party during a protest in front of the Constituent Assembly on July 1, 2013 in Tunis. Tunisia's National Assembly began debating for the first time the draft constitution, which has been criticised by opponents of the Islamist-led government and took far longer to promulgate than originally planned. (AFP PHOTO / FETHI BELAID)
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Tunisian opposition activists are launching their own version of Egypt's Tamarod protest movement, which Wednesday night saw President Morsi removed by the Egyptian army.
Inspired by events in the neighbouring country, the leaders of the Tunisian Tamarod (the Arabic for ‘rebel’) are trying to organize mass protests in the country, with a view to overthrowing the governing Islamist party Ennahda. The group blames the current government, which came to power following an uprising in 2011, for failing to run the economy properly and for trying to turn the Tunisian state more religious.
Despite Ennahda accepting that sharia law not be included within Tunisia’s new constitution, Tunisia’s Tamarod fear that the latter may pave the way to a religious state.
The group’s spokesman, Mohamed Bennour , told reporters that Tunisia’s “ young are following in the footsteps of young Egyptians.. We are not satisfied with what is happening in the country, from an attack on freedoms to a bad economic and social situation”.
Tensions between Tunisia’s liberals and Islamists have become more strained since 2011, when President Ben Ali was deposed.
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