Protests over economy flare in Tunisian capital

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Associated Press

Posted on January 11, 2014 at 7:02 AM

Updated Saturday, Jan 11 at 8:04 AM

TUNIS, Tunisia (AP) — Riots over Tunisia's economy flared overnight in a suburb of the capital.

Crowds protested outside the government finance buildings in the low-income neighborhood of Ettaddamon over new taxes levied by the government late Friday.

Police reported that local criminals took advantage and began looting stores and clashing with authorities. They were dispersed with tear gas.

The riots come right after a new caretaker prime minister, Mehdi Jomaa, was charged with forming a technocratic cabinet to guide the country to new elections.

The outgoing government had levied new taxes to confront massive budget deficit, prompting protests around the country on Wednesday.

Since Tunisia's 2011 revolution, the economy has suffered, fueling social unrest.

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