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05.08.2011 Tunisia

Tunisia imposes curfew after unrest

More than 40 people were injured in the curfew.  By Fethi Belaid (AFP/File)
More than 40 people were injured in the curfew. By Fethi Belaid (AFP/File)

TUNIS (AFP) - Tunisian authorities have imposed a curfew in the southeastern region of Sfax following clashes between villagers, sources said Friday.

More than 40 people were injured, some of them seriously, in fighting that broke out Thursday at a market in the village of Jebeniana.

"The curfew will run from 8:00 pm to 5:00 am (0700 to 0400 GMT) from Friday for an indefinite period," said interior ministry spokesman Hichem Moueddeb.

Residents from Jebeniana and the neighbouring village of Mesratia clashed with knives, clubs and stones in the market and a local hospital on Thursday, the TAP news agency reported.

Moueddeb said the fighting related to a stolen vehicle.

"Residents of Mesratia forced their way into our homes, wounding our children with swords and guns," a Jebeniana villager told AFP.

Tunisia has been witnessing clashes in its regions since the period of calm that followed the ousting of former president Zine el Abidine Ben Ali at the start of the year.

On July 26 interim authorities prolonged indefinitely a state of emergency instigated on January 14, the day the regime fell.

© 2011 AFP