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Tunisian police clash with protesters as unrest continues

Reuters

Police officers fire tear gas to break up a protest during demonstrations in Tebourba, Tunisia, on Tuesday.

Reuters TUNIS (Reuters) — Tunisian police clashed with anti-government protesters in the capital Tunis and several other towns on Tuesday, residents said, as fresh demonstrations against austerity measures broke out a day after one person was killed in unrest.

Protests erupted in at least 12 towns across Tunisia on Monday, among them the tourist towns of Sousse and Hammamet, against price and tax rises imposed by the government to reduce its ballooning deficit and satisfy international lenders.

In Tunis on Tuesday police fired tear gas in two districts and also fired gas at a crowd storming a supermarket of France’s Carrefour, a witness said. No casualties were reported.

Fresh clashes also broke out in Tebourba, a town 40 kilometers west of Tunis where one protester was killed on Monday, witnesses said, and soldiers could be seen there and in Jelma, a central town where clashes were also reported.

The main opposition party had hours earlier called for protests to continue until the government scrapped what it called an unjust 2018 budget including price and tax hikes.

While Tunisia is widely seen as the only democratic success story among the nations where Arab Spring revolts took place in 2011, it has had nine governments since then and none of them have been able to tackle growing economic problems.

Europe is concerned about stability in Tunisia, partly because unemployment there has forced many young Tunisians to go abroad: The number of boats smuggling migrants to Italy has been rising and Tunisia has also produced the largest number of jihadists heading for battlefields in Iraq, Syria and Libya.Speech

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