As always, here at the Tunisia Security Update, we make sure to verify any sort of rumor before posting it as fact. On Wednesday January 25th, there was a rumor going around mainly on social networks concerning a “salafists group “attacking” a group of German tourists that were trying to visit the mausoleum of Sidi Sahbi in Kairouan“. After consulting with various security sources we are still unable to fully confirm the details of this alleged incident.
What we do know is that the story was aired on the Tunisian radio station Shems FM and additional security sources have concluded that something to this effect did take place. While the fact that the story received a lot of attention on social networks and was aired on a radio station doesn’t automatically validate it, it’s still a good reminder about the importance of situational awareness.
Although according to one source, local security forces reacted properly and professionally, the alleged incident is a good example of what I call “Expat Awareness”. This is especially true for those who are traveling outside the Tunis region. In a recent interview the Tunisian Prime Minister, Hamadi Jebali stated “serious security breaches in key sectors” as the cause of major economic disorder.
Small but vocal…
Security analysts have smartly labeled the Salafist in Tunisia as a “small but vocal minority“. While we absolutely know that they don’t represent the vast majority of open-minded and friendly Tunisians, we can not ignore the role they’re playing in the new security landscape. It is important to note that a recent report on one of the leading salafist group in Tunisia concluded that “based on the content the group has released in the form of statements, essays, and videos, the group does not seem interested in global or local jihad. Rather, most of the issues the group is agitated about deal with local problems, and they have expressed their views through peaceful protests.”
The UK website gets it right on the money on their Tunisia travel advice page where they empathize that “Most visits to Tunisia are trouble-free, but all travelers should be aware of the current political and security situation…” This statement summarizes our view here at the Tunisia Security Update… Awareness is the Key and Knowledge is Protection.
Tunisia Security Update
Your source in Tunisia for relevant and practical security information…
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