23 May 2011 — The Bullet – Socialist Project E-Bulletin No.505
Interview with Sadri Khiari
The Tunisian revolution has been the detonator of the wave of protests and uprisings which have spread across North Africa and the Middle East since January, 2011. Sparked by the self-immolation of Mohamed Bouazizi on December 17, 2010, the Tunisian revolution quickly spread from the towns in the central mining and agricultural regions of the country to the coastal cities, including the capital Tunis. Mass demonstrations, riots and strikes compelled President Ben Ali to flee the country on January 14. The ultimate outcome of the still fluid revolutionary process remains undetermined. So far popular mobilization and the forces activated by them – a series of parties, associations, unions, and intellectuals now organized in a loose coordinating committee (Le comité de salut public à la tunisienne) – have succeeded in forcing the retreat and partial dissolution of the networks of repression of the Ben Ali regime, changing the composition of the interim government a number of times and implementing their demand for a constituent assembly, from which Ben Ali’s old ruling party, Le Rassemblement constitutionnel démocratique (RCD) will be excluded for ten years. Governed by a new electoral law passed on April 11, elections for this assembly are scheduled for July 24.
Sadri Khiari is a Tunisian dissident now living in France, where he is a leading intellectual of Le Parti des Indigènes de la République (PIR), an anti-racist political party founded in 2010. He has published a number of books on Tunisia – Tunisie, le délitement de la cité – coercition, consentement, résistances (Paris: Karthala, 2003) and on the post-colonial situation in France [Pour une politique de la racaille (Paris: Textuel, 2006); La contre-révolution coloniale en France (Paris: La Fabrique, 2008), and Sainte Caroline contre Tariq Ramadan (Paris: La Revanche, 2011)].