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Tunisia: Police disperse protesters with teargas near Francophonie summit venue

Hundreds marched in Djerba on Friday to stop the Francophonie summit after the Interior minister refused to meet them over Zarzis boat tragedy

Footage shows large numbers of protesters gathering on public streets, some holding portraits of victims of the tragedy, while security officers fired tear gas grenades in their direction.

“We will continue the sit-in until we discover the mysterious truth behind the disappearance of our sons’ bodies, and we will hold all those who have committed crimes against our sons accountable,” said a protester.

According to local media, the protests began in Zarzis because, according to the protesters, the government failed to respond to the disaster and initially failed to send out boats to search for bodies and to identify the bodies found before burial.

Tunisian coastguard recovered 11 bodies from the Zarzis coast, south of Tunisia, in October, thought to be of irregular migrants lost at sea while attempting to reach Europe through Italy. According to the coastguard, the bodies were already half rotten when they were found.

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