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Unemployed Tunisian graduates stage sit-in protest

Unemployed Tunisian graduates stage sit-in protest

Tunisia

Calm appears to have returned to the Tunisian town of Kasserine after a wave of violent protests last Friday led to the imposition of a nationwide curfew.

The unemployed graduates who have been protesting the non-availability of jobs since January 19 on Sunday staged a sit-in protest to back their demands for employment.

Kasserine has an unemployment rate of 26 percent far above the national average of 15.2 percent.

Everybody here says I have the right to work. If we have Tunisian nationality we must work.

Imad, a resident of Kasserine, said “the only claim of this sit-in is employment. Everybody here says I have the right to work. If we have Tunisian nationality we must work. You as a minister must give me a job.”

Another protester bemoaned the absence of jobs for both graduates and non-graduates.

“Those who have graduated and those who have not, both didn’t find a job, even those with a PhD cannot find a position here. So, we have been waiting in silence. They asked for patience, one, two, three years, but we have nothing,” she said.

Tunisian Prime Minister Habib Essid on Saturday said he understood the demands of the young Tunisians but stressed it would take time to respond to their economic demands.

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