Before I start my week there are (2) types of forecasts that I am interested in:
Although the regular weather forecast for this week is not particularly interesting; we need to pay attention to the security forecast.
As in many other countries, Tunisia celebrates May 1st as Labor Day. Last year many Tunisians celebrated Labour Day by marching from the Labor Union building to Habib Bourguiba.
This year there is a lot of chatter on social media sites, online news sites, and among everyday Tunisians concerning May 1st demonstrations.
According to an online news site (Kapitalis):
“On May 1, Labour Day, there will be no lilies in Tunisia, but the havoc. With increasing calls for protests against the government Ennahdha, from political parties, organizations or simple citizens coordination.” (Translated from French)
Apart from the major security breakdown on September 14, 2012 and the political assignation of Mr. Chokri Belaid the security trend regarding large scale protests/demonstrations usually goes like this:
Build up on social media sites + Calls to protest & threats / Met by prepared Tunisian Security forces which usually result in very minimal disturbances.
This year we anticipate more of the same activity especially on Avenue Habib Bourguiba (downtown Tunis) and Bardo (National Constituent Assembly).
Last year’s May Day Demonstrations
Tunisia Security Update subscribers know the deal. We know to avoid protests. We know to monitor information (Facebook TS Update, Twitter @DavidSecurity, Blog). We know about situational awareness and expat networking.
Since large scale disruptions & security breakdowns are way beyond the control of any individual expat; we need to adopt a strategic approach to our security setup. Rather than depend on a particular plan we need to remain aware & connected.
During the next few days we’ll start seeing more and more negative news about May 1st and possible challenges ahead. By staying informed and using practical personal security techniques we will not only worry less but also enjoy Tunisia more.
Let’s stay connected and keep the conversation going.