More spiraling towards totalitarianism for the first ‘Arab Spring’ state, Tunisia.
Tunisia: Democracy further eroded
The National Body for the Reform of Information and Communication (INRIC under its French acronym) established after the revolution to reform Tunisian media, has announced today 4 July that it has shut down after failing to achieve its objective, accusing the government of censorship.
“The body does not see the point in continuing its work and announces that it has terminated its work,” said Kamel Labidi, who headed the INRIC. Labidi justified the decision by saying the government had reverted to “censorship and disinformation.”
INRIC was created after the revolution that overthrew president Zine El Abidine Ben Ali in January last year to reform the media sector, and particularly state media organs, to guarantee Tunisia’s previously restricted press freedom.
ARTICLE 19 worked closely with INRIC throughout 2011 to support its work through the provision of legal and technical assistance.
“INRIC and the various reforms it instituted were considered by many within the human rights community as the most successful democratic undertakings of the post-revolution phase. Its closure today and the reasons behind it testify to the large democratic retreat experienced by the country since the October elections. The sole responsibility for this regression lies with the Tunisian Government. ” says Dr. Agnes Callamard, ARTICLE 19 Executive Director.