Protests as Tunisia readies cabinet reshuffle

By Tarek Amara and Andrew Hammond

TUNIS | Thu Jan 27, 2011 10:49am EST

(Reuters) – Protesters stormed police barricades in the Tunisian capital on Thursday and the government prepared to dismiss key loyalists of ousted leader Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali in the face of widespread public anger. Continue reading Protests as Tunisia readies cabinet reshuffle

Analysis: Tunisian “revolution” could leave government vacuum

By Andrew Hammond

TUNIS | Tue Jan 25, 2011 10:55am EST

(Reuters) – At a news conference in Tunis this week, a young journalist pressed leftist opposition leader Moncef Marzouki to outline his party’s policies.

“We will put forward our program but for now we want to continue this revolution and protect it from those who want to bring it down,” he said. “All politicians should put their personal ambitions on hold until we complete the revolution.” Continue reading Analysis: Tunisian “revolution” could leave government vacuum

Talks under way for body to oversee Tunisia cabinet

By Tarek Amara and Andrew Hammond

TUNIS | Mon Jan 24, 2011 6:50pm EST

(Reuters) – Tunisian politicians are negotiating the creation of a council to oversee the interim government, people close to the talks said Monday after days of street protests demanding that the cabinet resign.

They said the council would be tasked with protecting the revolution that toppled veteran president Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali this month, amid widespread complaints that former members of the ruling party are trying to cling on to power. Continue reading Talks under way for body to oversee Tunisia cabinet

Tunisia’s police state still in place -activists

By Andrew Hammond

TUNIS | Mon Jan 24, 2011 3:51pm EST

(Reuters) – The police state apparatus set up by ousted Tunisian leader Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali is still in place, rights activists said on Monday, saying a failure to dismantle it could endanger democratic progress. Continue reading Tunisia’s police state still in place -activists

Tunisian media enjoy freedom, fear for future

By Andrew Hammond

TUNIS | Fri Jan 21, 2011 4:06pm GMT

(Reuters) – At their union headquarters in central Tunis, journalists long used to rigid censorship meet to ponder the meaning of an era of freedom they never saw coming.

“People are joyous but the feeling is mixed with concern,” says Zouheir Taba, a journalist at Hurriya, a paper owned by the RCD party that dominated the North African country for decades until a popular revolt ousted the president last week. Continue reading Tunisian media enjoy freedom, fear for future

Tunisians recall living next door to “the Family”

Wed, 19 Jan 2011 18:12 GMT

By Andrew Hammond

TUNIS, Jan 19 (Reuters) – The sudden exit of ousted Tunisian leader Ben Ali and his family in a popular revolt has left a big hole in the life of the affluent suburbs of the capital that were once their playground.

The ruling clan of the North African country of 10 million were regular fixtures in the social scene of Gammarth, Marsa and Carthage districts where they maintained houses and had extensive business interests.

Many people were still afraid to talk openly about a clique referred to for years in whispers as simply “The Family”. Continue reading Tunisians recall living next door to “the Family”

Tunisia frees prisoners, says wants break with past

By Christian Lowe and Andrew Hammond

TUNIS | Wed Jan 19, 2011 6:55pm EST

(Reuters) – Tunisia’s interim leaders said they freed the last of its political prisoners and promised a “complete break with the past” on Wednesday to appease street protesters who want a total purge of the old guard. Continue reading Tunisia frees prisoners, says wants break with past