Latest from USIP on Tunisia
- May 14, 2013 | Publication
A deputy in Tunisia’s National Constituent Assembly takes on criticisms from Human Rights Watch as the country considers a third draft of its constitution.
- April 30, 2013 | Event
During the 2011 uprisings, Arab protestors channeled decades of discontent with failed economic policy. However, the demise of leaders will not be enough to answer this discontent nor ensure productive development. Scholarship on the political determinates of economic development finds that the common recipe of expanding the private sector and increasing trade openness may be valuable, but alone are not sufficient for successful development. The Arab World’s economic path to 2011 included implementation in these areas, yet reform in underlying socio-economic structures and interests lagged. Addressing these conditions constitutes one of the most serious challenges facing Arab economies and politics.
- March 25, 2013 | Publication
Tunisian officials are running out of time to address the country’s biggest political and economic challenges since the 2011 revolution and restore the quickly-eroding trust of its citizens, several academic leaders said during a visit to Washington organized by the U.S. Institute of Peace, a Georgetown University program and the Project on Middle East Democracy.
- March 20, 2013 | Event
Tunisia's 2010-11 “Jasmine Revolution” ignited a flame of political rebellion that quickly spread to Egypt, Yemen, Libya, Bahrain, and Syria. But as the "Arab Spring" enters its third season, Tunisia’s struggle for democracy is beset by escalating ideological and even violent conflicts. What are the key challenges facing Tunisia? How can U.S. officials and nongovernmental organizations help Tunisians address mounting domestic and regional crises?
In December 2010, popular protests unexpectedly erupted in Tunisia. Within the span of a month, 23 years of authoritarian rule by President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali came to an abrupt end when he fled the county, announcing his official resignation on state television on January 15, 2011. The catalyst for the uprising was a young Tunisian vendor, Muhammad Bouazizi, who later came to symbolize the grievances that gave rise to the ensuing chain of uprisings in the Middle East and North Africa, now commonly referred to as the “Arab Spring.” On December 17, 2010, Bouazizi set himself on fire to protest harassment by a local police officer and the confiscation of his only source of income, a vegetable cart.
Bouazizi’s act let loose deep-seated grievances of many Tunisians, stemming from tough social and economic conditions, government corruption, and tight-fisted security policies. Social media and extensive coverage by the Qatar-based news agency, Al Jazeera, allowed the world to watch protesters clash with security forces. Police violence left tens of people dead. On January 15, Ben-Ali announced his official resignation on state television. An interim government, headed by former Speaker of Parliament Fouad Mebazaa, was tasked with organizing elections by mid-July. Since then, a number of the original members of the interim government—including Prime Minister Mohamed Ghannouchi—have resigned and been replaced by new members. Their resignations came largely in response to demands by protestors who saw the appointees as too close to the old regime.
- The Arab Awakening
As the dramatic events of the Arab Spring turn to the more mundane yet vital work of governance, constitution writing and peacebuilding, USIP is on the ground, bringing its unique brand of action and expertise to the effort.
Work & Analysis
Special Report by Querine Hanlon | March 2012
Security Sector Reform in Tunisia: A Year After the Jasmine Revolution
The long-term success of Tunisia’s new democracy hinges on efforts to reform its security sector. Most in need of reform are the police, gendarme, and interior ministry. | Read more
On the Issues by Bob Perito | February 2012
Reforming the Security Sector in Tunisia and Libya
Bob Perito, director of USIP's Security Governance Center of Innovation, recently returned from Tunisia and Libya, where he met with police, military and government officials to examine the current status of the security sector in each country. | Read more
In the Field | January 2012
Dispatch from Tunisia
USIP’s Robert Perito, director of the security sector governance center, files this dispatch from Tunisia which is experiencing a transition to democracy from authoritarian rule. | Read more
In the Field | January 2012
The Muslim World, Poland and USIP
The Polish government makes use of USIP training to help key figures from Afghanistan and Tunisia lead their own countries’ transitions. | Read more
News Feature | January 2012
The Arab Awakening and its Aftermath: How to Shape the Path Ahead
A discussion at the Reserve Officers Association headquarters with USIP’s Steve Hadley and Carnegie’s Marwan Muasher. | Read more
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