World Country Tunisia

About the world country Tunisia, its location, size, population, and who is in power.



Location: On the Mediterranean coast of North Africa, between Libya and Algeria. Size: 63,170 sq. mi. (163,610 sq. km.). Population: 6,716,000.

Who Really Rules: Tunisia is governed by President Habib Bourguiba (born in 1903) and his factionalized Destourian Socialist party (PSD). Under Bourguiba, the country's foreign-oriented economic growth policies have brought income inequalities and corruption. To find work, some 200,000 Tunisians have gone to Europe.

Tunisia's labor movement is historically strong; it spearheaded the fight for independence from France. In 1978, when the General Union of Tunisian Workers (UGTT) staged a general strike against government economic policies, the government smashed the union leadership. In 1980, however, the shake-up in the PSD leadership brought a more conciliatory attitude toward the labor movement. Under Prime Minister Mohamed Mzali, the government might even legalize opposition parties, since the political situation is too unstable for the PSD to replace Bourguiba smoothly when he dies. In early 1980, when Libyan-trained Tunisian guerrillas attempted a local insurrection, the U.S. and France speeded military aid to the government.

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