Daily Archives: June 18, 2014

On May 14, the National Guard and Security of Remada arrested two terrorists in the region of Douar Nekrif. The men were between the ages of 31 and 32, one was of Libyan descent and the other Algerian. Both men were in possession of explosives that they planned to use for terroristic activity. One man threw a grenade at the National guard and security, however it failed to detonate. The Interior Ministry confiscated a geolocation device (GPS), two mobile phones, and a fake Libyan passport amongst some currency. Both men entered Tunisian territory through neighboring countries.

Asma Ghribi

Located on the island of Djerba South of Tunisia, La Ghriba Synagogue is the location of Jewish pilgrimage(s) which is held each spring. Known as one of the oldest Synagogue’s in the world, and the home of a Jewish community of some 1100 people.
During the time of the pilgrimage, a ritual in which visitors light candles in the Ghriba synagogue and are blessed by Rabbis. This event is set to occur on Friday and Sunday.
There were some rumors that the pilgrimage of 2011 is to be cancelled but organizers asserted that festivities linked to a pilgrimage that draws thousands every year to the Tunisia synagogue have been scaled down due to security fears.

 

Tunisia was unanimously elected to the Presidency of the General Union of Arab Accountants and Auditors; Mr. Salah Dhibi, Chairman of the Tunisian Accountants Board, during the Union’s general assembly, held on May 13, in Cairo.The Union is a member of the Council of Arab Economic Unity stemming from the Arab League. It is made up of 17 commissions and professional organisations specialised in accounting and auditing in the Arab world.

 The economist and former minister Elyes Jouini met today with a number of leading economists around the Prime Minister, Beji Caid Essebsi. 
 
Guests included among others, Nobel laureate Joseph Stiglitz, Jean-Louis Reiffers (Femis, Dean of the university of the Mediterranean in Aix) and Olivier Pastre, a specialist in Islamic finance.

Other economists who were not present but will video conference with the Prime Minister include: Daniel Cohen, Francois Bourguignon annd ElMohoub Mouhoud from Paris, Richard Portes from London, and Jean-Paul Fitoussi from Rome.

Following this action, a strong appeal will be launched in anticipation of the G8 meeting of 27th and 28th May and which Tunisia is the guest of honor

TUNIS (TAP) The 2011 Albert Londres Award ceremony was held on Saturday afternoon at the Municipal Theatre of Tunis in tribute to the Tunisian Revolution. The Albert Londres Award, created in 1933, rewards the best journalists in the Francophone press.
Agence France Press (AFP) journalist Emmanuel Duparcq was awarded the written press prize of this new edition (73rd) of reports in Pakistan and Afghanistan. The 27th Albert Londres Audiovisual Award was handed to director David André, for his film “Une Peine Infinie” on death penalty in the state of Oklahoma, USA.
Mrs. Annick Cojean, President of the Jury, Chairwoman of the Association of Albert Londres Award and journalist at “Le Monde” newspaper, said the organisation of the award ceremony in Tunis is a tribute to the Tunisian Revolution and Tunisian journalists who suffered a lot from dictatorship.
The ceremony was attended by Messrs. Mehdi Houas- Minister of Trade and Tourism, Hassen Annabi-Secretary of State for Education, Mokhtar Trifi-Chairman of the Tunisian League for Human Rights, Mohamed Larbi Chouikha-academic and member of the Independent National Authority for Reform of Information and Communication, Tidiane Dioh- representative of the International Organisation of la Francophonie, as well as the Deputy Director General of AFP- French journalists and intellectuals.

The communication unit under the Prime Ministry has organizeed on friday the 20th, his first meeting with the media. This meeting comes in the wake of the decision of the Prime Minister to strengthen the role of this cell. It is an opportunity to get closer to the national public opinion and better inform the Government’s activities in various fields.

In a statement to the national press, the Communication Officer to the Prime Minister, Moez Sinaoui presented on May 16, the new functions of the communication cell. He said it will be responsible for collecting date of national public opinion through media outlets, electronic sites,social networks or on the email address created for this purpose (com@pm.gov.tn)

This cell, he added, will coordinate with the various structures and in particular the ministries (Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Interior, Ministry of Defence and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs) to address the concerns of public opinion.

In a first step, the communication cell provides the organization of two meetings per week, Tuesday and Friday and from 17:00 this. He added that these meetings will take place at the Government Palace in the Kasbah and will gather representatives of relevant ministries and the media.

The cell, he continued, “provides for the multiplication of these meetings and use other interactive methods to better communicate and transmit information to news organizations seamlessly.”

  (Tunis TAP) Journalists, technicians and agents of the journal Essahafa conducted a sit-in on Monday May 16,  at the headquarters of the newspaper.

The newspaper’s staff, on the same day held a meeting to discuss developments in their protests since it began last April 25.

They condemned in a statement “the slowness of the Prime Ministry in the treatment of their case,” claiming that the current CEO, Ben Romdhane H’mida, continues to lead the newspaper from his place of residence.

They accused the CEO of hindering any initiative or project to promote the journal at its retail level. He also made an unpopular descision to suspend the financial benefits of more agents.

Page 3: “Inquiring Friaa and Safra postponing withdrawing Rajhi’s Immunity”
Ahmed Friaa and Monji Safra, respectively former Minister of Interior and former advisor of  ousted presidentBen Ali, were called into inquiry yesterday. It has been decided to release them until the completion of investigation. In the same regard, the announcement of whether Rajhi’s immunity will withdrawn or not has been defered to next saturday.
Page 9: “Matmata worried because of Kalashnikov guns and bombs”
The residents of Matmata; a village in the south of Tunisia, has been extremely worried because of the Lybian bombs that fell not far from their homes. To add to their fear, a group of armed men with Kalashnikov guns and TNT at one point approached them.

Asma Ghribi

Taxi drivers are not an exception to the wave of open strikes that have recently shaken Tunisia. On Sunday May 15th, they announced that they will be in an open strike starting from Monday May 16th.
Hence on Monday morning, many Tunisians thought they would find yellow free streets and resort to other forms of  public transportation yet they were surprised to find many taxis still circulating and working.
One of those who were working said : “ I have just heard of it (the strike). A friend of mine called me to ask and so I knew. I will join my friends after this lift.” It is evident, when it comes to Taxi’s striking, that there is often a lack of communication. Others were working due to their difficult financial situation(s) preventing  them from striking on a work day.

Their demands are as follows: departure of Ali Fehri, the head of the Union of the (Taxi) Profession who according to Laroussi, a taxi driver, “is not the right man to speak for their rights”.  Improving the working conditions by ensuring their security especially at night and reconsidering the tariffs in ratio to the expenses or implementing a system of refunding the costs of the fuel.
After the revolution, and after a huge number of demands, the mayor of Tunis handed a number of authorizations to what we call collective transport which are mini busses able to transport up to 8 people.  This change was embraced by many, since it helped create new jobs. This is however not the case for the taxi drivers who are suffering a loss as a result.

By: Ibrahim Ben Slama

Slim Chiboub, the son-in-law of Ben Ali, has won an appeal against the Council of the European Union concerning blocking his bank accounts in Europe. A copy of the Official Journal of the European Union was published on May 16th on EUR-Lex (the official website that provides free access to European Union law and other documents considered to be public). In the document, it is evident that Slim Chiboub represented by the lawyer G. Perrot, has succeeded in annulling the decision of the Council and has even made it pay for the costs of the trial. Perrot supported the appeal by three major arguments. Firstly, on the violation of the fundamental right of the Mr. Chiboub to be heard by the court before taking its decision (refereeing to decision 2011/72/CFSP). Furthermore, Perrot mentioned that no justifications have been presented to explain the inclusion of his client in the “disputed list”. The third argument was that Mr. Chiboub can not be accused of “misappropriation of funds for the purposes of money laundering” since the money came from FIFA which remunerated him under numerous contracts between 2006 and 2010.
This news has been badly received by  Tunisian internet users, being the first to hear about it through social networks. It is predictable that it is not going to please the public opinion to know that the figures of the old regime are not being severely punished in Tunisia nor aboard.

Link to the original document:

http://eurlex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.douri=OJ:C:2011:145:0038:0038:EN:PDF