End human rights backsliding in Tunisia

Tunisia’s post-revolution achievements are in peril. Since his power grab on 25 July 2021, President Kais Saied launched an escalating assault on human rights, undermining freedom of expression and association as fair trial rights. His racist rhetoric in 2023 triggered a wave of anti-Black violence against migrants and refugees in the country.

What is the problem?

High-profile Tunisian parliamentarians and other political figures, journalists, human rights defenders, and activists have been targeted for opposing the president’s power grab and repression by his government. They have faced arbitrary arrests and detention, travel bans, and criminal investigations.  Since 25 July 2021, courts have opened investigations and, in some cases, trials of at least 39 people for the peaceful exercise of their right to freedom of expression, including under Decree-Law 54 which gives authorities wide powers to crackdown on freedom of expression and interfere with online privacy. 

Furthermore, President Saied has repeatedly undermined the independence of the judiciary by dissolving the High Judicial Council and arbitrarily dismissing 57 judges and prosecutors.  

Following President Saied’s discriminatory remarks, hundreds of migrants and refugees were assaulted, evicted, or arbitrarily arrested without suspected perpetrators being held accountable for these human rights abuses.  

What can you do to help?

Act now and urge the Tunisian President and other authorities to end the escalating crackdown on human rights including the right to freedom of expression and association, to uphold the rights of migrants and refugees, and to refrain from compromising judicial independence.