Tunisia – On Sunday, tens of thousands of Tunisians gathered in the capital to protest President Kais Saied’s “exceptional measures.” The latest measures have been dubbed a “coup” by government critics. Kais Saied’s dismissed the Prime Minister and froze parliament at the end of July.
Many consider the president’s recent actions to be a return to autocracy and the status quo that sparked the Arab Spring in 2011. “Tunisia’s future scares me tremendously. For the time being, we don’t know what kind of institutions we’ll have. Our country lacks a parliament and democratic institutions. I’m quite scared, “A Tunisian teacher who took part in the protest, Raja Masmoudi, said
“This crowd needs to grow tenfold, and not just in Tunis, but across the country, in all governorates, and in all major cities; (demonstrations) must be held everywhere. We must reach the point of civil disobedience, because if Kais Saied and the coup leaders remain in power, Tunisia will be financially ruined, and a civil war will erupt, as Lebanon did 40 years ago.” Mohamed Souhail, a 63-year-old engineer, agrees.
On September 22nd, as part of the latest round of measures, the President partially suspended the 2014 constitution, giving him the power to rule by decree. President Saied claims that his actions are necessary to save the country from a triple economic, political, and health crisis.