Tunisian activists began focusing on Monday evening on Egypt, where they hoped a planned protest on Tuesday would show the continued impact of their own Jasmine Revolution among Arab neighbors.
This, as it was revealed that the Ben Ali regime used a malicious code to steal the passwords of all the country Facebook users! They then often deleted the Facebook accounts of dissidents.
In Tunisia itself, hundreds of protesters, many of them from the countryside, continued to demonstrate on Monday night outside the offices of Prime Minister Mohamed Ghannouchi. Throughout Monday, several thousand demonstrators assembled in downtown Tunis had demanded the resignation of members of the interim government who were holdovers from the regime of deposed president Zine Ben Ali.
The rallies targeted those ministers who had served in the Ben Ali regime or were from his party, including Prime Minister Ghannouchi, Minister of Defense Rida Grira, Interior Minister Ahmed Friaa, and Foreign Minister Kamel Morjane.
At one point there was a brief confrontation between the protesters and mostly unarmed police, when the crowd threw projectiles at the police, who were escorting a group of politicians. The police used tear gas to disperse the angry crowds.
At another point the army chief of staff, Gen. Ammar Rashid, addressed the crowd, saying:
” Our revolution, your revolution, the revolution of the youth, risks being lost, and there is a risk that it will be usurped by others. There are forces calling for a vacuum of power. But vacuums engender terror, which engenders dictatorship.”
He pledged that the army would protect the revolution.
The protesters appear not to have taken his cautions to heart.
Some opposition parties are seeking a compromise by appointing a ‘council of wise men’ to oversee the government in the lead-up to new elections.