More violent unrest has broken out in Tunisia with disturbances spreading to the capital for the first time. In one suburb of Tunis, police fired into the air to disperse a protesting crowd accused of ransacking buildings.
One young man said: ‘‘There are a lot of families who have had difficulty getting food for the month. They are also without electricity and running water. There is no food here and even if it comes, it’s way too expensive.’‘
The wave of violence is the worst to hit Tunisia in decades. More than 20 people have been killed since last week say officials , but human rights groups set the death count much higher. Hospitals have reportedly been inundated with casualties.
‘‘There are people lying in the corridors, the beds are full. I’m grateful to the doctors but they are completely overwhelmed.’‘ said one man in the town of Kasserine, a focus of recent protests.
Much of the unrest has been sparked by demands for jobs and better living conditions. Despite international concern over the handling of the protests, authorities insist many rallies have been hijacked by violent extremists.