In a report released on Monday, 9 November 2020, Amnesty International called on the Tunisian authorities to stop exploiting repressive and largely outdated laws in order to prosecute those who have spoken freely. In its report, the NGO revealed that between 2018 and 2020, at least 40 people were prosecuted for having published on social networks criticisms of the police, state representatives or those of the regional authorities.
Although the majority of cases identified by the NGO did not result in prison sentences, Amnesty International recalled that the summons, interrogations and trials are acts of intimidation designed to deter individuals from exercising their freedom of expression.
Amnesty International’s Deputy Regional Director for the Middle East and North Africa, Amna Guellali, said “It is worrying that ten years after the revolution, bloggers and activists are being prosecuted under laws that date back to when Tunisia was living under a repressive regime, only for posting their opinions on Facebook.”
In this context, Amna Guellali called on the Tunisian legislator to give top priority to the reform of extremely vague laws that allow the repression of freedom of expression, “one of the hard-won values of the revolution,” she said.