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Tunisia can be a model for democratic transformation in Arab world, say experts

By Tamim Elyan CAIRO: The Tunisian revolution challenged stereotypes of the stagnant political scene associated with the Arab world and can now set a model for democratic transformation for the region, a roundtable discussion concluded Sunday. Speaking at the discussion held at the Arab Alternatives Forum for Political Studies, experts hailed the role of the …

DNE

Protesters vow to bring down Tunisia’s ‘Bastille’

By Thibauld Malterre/ AFP TUNIS: “The Kasbah is the Bastille of Tunisia, and we are going to bring it down,” says a young demonstrator, among hundreds who spent the night outside the office of the prime minister, demanding he quits. Wrapped in blankets and fed by locals, the group defied a curfew and the cold …

DNE

Women keep wary eye on Tunisian revolt

By Kaouther Larbi / AFP TUNIS: Tunisian women are watching warily should the popular revolt that ousted the authoritarian president also unravel women’s rights bolstered by his secular regime in this predominantly Muslim country. “I’m scared of the return of the Islamists,” said Sonia, a 35-year-old government official who declined to give her last name, as …

DNE

Thousands pressure Tunisian PM to quit

By Imed Lamloum and Thibauld Malterre/AFP TUNIS: Thousands of anti-government protesters rallied outside Tunisian Prime Minister Mohammed Ghannouchi’s office on Sunday, calling for him to quit after the downfall of the north African state’s 23-year regime. “The people have come to bring down the government,” the protesters chanted as they brandished pictures of some of the …

DNE

Egyptians should copy Tunisian revolt: ElBaradei

By AFP BERLIN: Opponents of Egypt’s long-running regime should be able to follow the lead set by the toppling of Tunisia’s veteran president, leading opposition figure Mohamed ElBaradei said in comments released Saturday. “If the Tunisians have done it, Egyptians should get there too,” the former UN nuclear watchdog chief told Der Spiegel for an …

DNE

People rushing to premature conclusions on Tunisia, says former American diplomat

CAIRO: People are rushing to conclusions about the repercussions of the Tunisian revolution and whether Egypt could follow suit, former US Deputy Secretary of State John Negroponte told Daily News Egypt. “I see people rushing to a lot of conclusions and events have barely happened, drawing various implications and I think that that’s premature,” Negroponte …

DNE

Tunisia, a game changer in the Middle East

By Radwan Masmoudi WASHINGTON, DC: There has been a democratic revolution in Tunisia over the past four weeks. This is a new and exciting era in Tunisian history, and an example for other countries of the Arab world. Unfortunately, however, it all started when a 26-year-old university graduate set himself on fire on Dec. 17 in …

DNE

Tunisian army fires warning shots during protest

TUNIS: The Tunisian army fired a barrage of warning shots in the capital Thursday as demonstrators converged on the headquarters of the longtime ruling party, which dissolved its decision-making core following a wave of departures by ministers desperate to keep their jobs. Protesters climbed over the RCD party offices in central Tunis and dismantled the …

DNE

Tunisian army emerges strong from people’s revolt

By Mohamed Hasni/ AFP TUNIS: Tunisia’s army has emerged from the month of unrest that toppled Zine El Abidine Ben Ali with its reputation burnished and the population full of praise after it refused to open fire on protesters. The army’s reported resistance to Ben Ali’s orders to fire on the protesters is also credited with …

DNE

Tunisia revolt makes Islamist threat ring hollow

By Tom Pfeiffer / Reuters CAIRO: The absence of Islamist slogans from Tunisia’s pro-democracy revolt punches a hole in the argument of many Arab autocrats that they are the bulwark stopping religious radicals sweeping to power. Ousted strongman Zein El-Abidine Ben Ali spent much of his 23-year rule crushing Islamist opposition groups who opposed his government’s …

DNE

Moussa warns Arab leaders of ‘unprecedented’ anger

By Yasmine Saleh and Sherine El Madany/Reuters SHARM EL-SHEIKH: The Arab League chief warned the region’s leaders on Wednesday to heed economic and political problems that sparked Tunisia’s upheaval because Arab citizens’ anger had reached an unprecedented level. Widespread public protests in Tunisia — prompted by high prices, a lack of jobs and political repression — …

DNE

Tunisia’s Morjane says ‘people had their say’

By AFP SHARM EL-SHEIKH: The Tunisian transitional government’s only ambition is to prepare for a free election and reforms after the Tunisian people “had their say”, Foreign Minister Kamel Morjane said on Tuesday. “The Tunisian people have had their say and won in this popular uprising,” he told reporters in the Egyptian resort town of …

DNE

After Tunisia, change in Egypt ‘inevitable’: ElBaradei

By AFP VIENNA: A regime change in Egypt is “inevitable” following the popular uprising in Tunisia, Egyptian opposition figure Mohamed ElBaradei said Tuesday. “It is inevitable. Change must come,” ElBaradei told the Austrian news agency APA in an interview. Last week, veteran Tunisian leader Zine El Abidine Ben Ali was forced to flee the country …

DNE

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