Tuesday 5 November 2002

Tunisia Stifles Web Publications

This article ran in Online Journalism Review on 5 November 2002.


Tunisian President Zine al-Abidine ben Ali brooks no online opposition; on top of other heavy-handed efforts against the Web, his regime has now jailed its first cyber-dissident...

Zouhair Yahyaoui attained the unfortunate distinction this summer of becoming Tunisia’s first Internet journalist to be imprisoned for his online work. It’s pretty clear he won’t be the last, if President Zine al-Abidine ben Ali’s harsh approach to online publishing continues.

Yahyaoui’s path to prison played out as a self-fulfilling prophecy to such an extent that it would be farce if it weren’t tragedy. His TUNeZINE criticism of the brutal regime was as creative as it was blunt and honest.