Defying threats and violence, Tunisia’s queer community take central role in anti-government protests

As anti-government protests continue in Tunisia, one community has been to the fore, reports Simon Speakman Cordall in Tunisia

Wednesday 24 February 2021 18:13
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 Tunisian anti-government protesters earlier this month on the streets of Tunis
Tunisian anti-government protesters earlier this month on the streets of Tunis

Tunisia is hardly a stranger to protest. From the mass demonstrations that toppled autocrat, Zine El Abidine Ben Ali in 2011 to the present, mass unrest has become a near annual fixture of Tunisian street life.

This year has been little different. Faced with a rising tide of social movements calling for economic development, jobs and an end to the financial stagnation that has dogged the country for over a decade, the government announced a strategic four day coronavirus lockdown, which would coincidentally fall over the ten year anniversary of the revolution.

If the strategy was intended to calm the mood, it backfired.

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