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Yearbook 2015

Tunisia. At the beginning of February, Parliament approved the new coalition government formed after the October parliamentary elections last year. According to COUNTRYAAH, the government consisted of representatives from the secular party Nidaa Tounes (Call for Tunisia), Islamic Ennahda and the small parties UPL (Free Patriotic Union) and Afek Tounes. In the fall, a short-lived crisis occurred in the largest government party Nidaa Tounes when more than a third of MPs temporarily resigned their party membership.

2015 Tunisia

During the year several acts of terror occurred in Tunis and Sousse, among others. On March 18, three terrorists opened fire on people outside the Bardom Museum, which is located next to the parliament in Tunis. Three people were taken hostage inside the museum and the parliament building was evacuated in connection with the attack that killed 22 people. On June 25, a new terrorist attack took place in El Kantaoui north of Sousse where 38 people, most British tourists, were shot dead on the beach and inside a hotel. After the massacre, an emergency permit was introduced which lasted for three months and the government announced that about 80 mosques would be closed because they were accused of calling for violence.

The Islamic State terrorist organization (IS) took on the blame for both attacks, which hit hard on the tourism industry as many tour operators canceled their trips to the country. Several countries issued warnings to avoid travel to Tunisia and the EU promised increased political and financial support for the country.

In response to the terrorist attacks, in June Parliament adopted stricter anti-terrorism legislation. The law was criticized by human rights activists who argued that it threatened fundamental freedoms and rights by, among other things, imposing the death penalty for more criminal offenses and allowing longer detention times.

In October, the Tunisian Quartet for National Dialogue was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for its mediation efforts after the 2011 revolution. rights. According to the Norwegian Nobel Committee, the quartet played a crucial role in the development towards peace, stability and democracy. In November, the US Secretary of State visited the country and met with other peacekeepers.

Just hours before President Beji Caid Essebsi's November 24 speech was broadcast live, a suicide bomber fired a bomb a few hundred meters from the Interior Ministry, right next to a bus in which parts of the president's security force were traveling. At least twelve people were killed and 20 seriously injured in the attack, which IS later took on the blame for. One week after the attack, the country's security minister, Rafik Chelly, was dismissed.

In connection with the incident, an emergency permit was introduced and Tunisia closed its border with Libya, where explosives used in the suicide bombing were tracked. Arms smuggling from the war-torn neighboring country Libya to Tunisia was described as an increasing security problem, as was the large number of Tunisians who joined warring jihadist groups in Syria during the year. About 3,000 Tunisians were estimated to participate in the war in Iraq and Syria, which was more than from any other country.

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