Radhia Nasraoui is a Tunisian lawyer and human rights activist since she graduated in the 1970′s. She is married to the leader of the Tunisian Communist Labor Party PCOT Hamma Hammami, one of Ben Ali’s worst enemies.
She started to argue in favor of Himan Rights during the general protests that were repressed by Bourguiba’s regime. In 1976, she was a 25 years old intern in a law firm. She convinced her colleagues to defend students during a period of political trials. Two years later, a general strike of workers was fiercely repressed. At the same time, Mrs. Nasraoui created her own firm and became a political trials “specialist”.
Bourguiba’s regime was against her ideas, and tried by all means to limit her efforts. But things became much more harder after 1987, when Ben Ali became the president . She was under surveillance by the political police, arrested and tortured several times.
The Human Rights activist networked with several international NGOs to get international exposure to her cause and protect herself.
Radhia Nasraoui dwelled one of few lawyers who defended even whom she doesn’t agree with. This helped her to remain credible despite all Ben Ali’s effort to ruin her career. In another hand, The dossiers she’s dealing with allows her to keep aware of torture cases.
In 2003, she created with a group of militants the Association to Fight again Torture in Tunisia (ALTT) to denounce such acts. This made her one of Ben Ali’s regime fiercest enemy. In 2003, she started a hunger strike, as she did one year before when her husband was arrested. She declared: “My life is human right. If you want to quiet me, you have to kill me… ”
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