Hundreds of residents in southern Tunisia gathered in the streets Wednesday demanding jobs and protesting the country's high unemployment rate, Reuters reported.
Residents and officials said four cities in southern Tunisia's "mining basin" area, where most of the phosphate exports are produced, began the general strike. In Metlaoui, Om Lrayes, Mdhila and Redayf shops and all public institutions were closed, according to Reuters.
State-run Gafsa Phosphate had suspended production earlier this month because of sit-in protests when the youth demanded employment.
Much of Tunisia's unrest and demonstrations in 2011 stemmed from a lack of jobs and rising living costs. The country is often cited as a success story of the Arab Spring, resulting in a democratic election and a new constitution.
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