WATCH: Riots in Tunisia after authorities BULLDOZE illegal kiosk & kill sleeping man inside
Hundreds of rioters clashed with police in the Tunisian town of Sbeitla after authorities bulldozed an unlicensed cigarette kiosk, killing its owner who was sleeping inside.
The accident, which happened during the execution of a local ordinance to remove illegal street shopping booths, sparked massive protests in the rural western Kasserine region on Tuesday. The Tunisian military was deployed to protect municipal buildings in Sbeitla amid the riots.
Locals reported that the 52-year-old cigarette vendor died while sleeping inside his kiosk when a police bulldozer arrived and flattened the structure, crushing him under the rubble.
Sbeitla municipality of #Kasserine demolished a Koshk (tiny corner shop) today at 4 am without checking if there was anybody inside. The decision caused the death of 52 year old owner who was sleeping inside to guard it. So far PM Mechichi announced “the exemption” of 2 officials pic.twitter.com/nCpGitWE8v
— Ghaya Ben Mbarek غاية بن مبارك (@Ghaya_BM) October 13, 2020
The man knew about the upcoming demolition, according to Middle East Eye, but decided to spend the night inside the shop that he was managing with his son in an effort to prevent its destruction. Local authorities in charge of the demolition process were reportedly unaware that there was a person in one of the kiosks.
After the unidentified man’s death was discovered in the morning, mass protests erupted in the area. Rioters broke into several government buildings, ransacked small businesses and blocked some roads with tires they set on fire.
A video from the protests shows a burning car that had been turned on its side.
محتجون تونسيون يشعلون النار في عدد من الممتلكات والإدارات الحكومية في مدينة #سبيطلة تعبيراً عن غضبهم على مقتل رجل كان نائماً داخل كشك هُدم بواسطة جرافة حكومية باعتبار أنه مخالف لأنظمة البلدية pic.twitter.com/rILPJEQSfl
— 24.ae (@20fourMedia) October 13, 2020
احتجاجات وحالة احتقان في بلدية “#سبيطلة” التونسية بعد تنفيذ قرار هدم كشك ووفاة صاحبه الذي كان نائماً داخله ورئيس الحكومة #هشام_مشيشي يقيل كل من محافظ #القصرين ومعتمد سبيطلة ومسؤولين أمنيين على خلفية الحادثة#تونس #218NEWS pic.twitter.com/GRjIkbSGlS
— 218NEWS (@218news) October 13, 2020
The government issued a response, with Tunisia’s Prime Minister Hichem Mechichi saying on Facebook that both the region’s governor and delegate (a lower-level administrator) have been dismissed. Mechichi added that the man’s family is going to receive financial compensation, and that an investigation into his death has been launched.
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Source:RT World News