“Vivien Yee”, the American newspaper “New York Times” correspondent, exposed Tunisian President Kais Saied, whom she met in a private interview a few days ago.
In her report on the Tunisian situation in the newspaper, Vivian mentioned the details of the meeting, and said that the Tunisian president pledged to preserve freedom of the media “without allowing me to ask him a single question during the meeting that brought me together.”
And the reporter of the American newspaper sarcastically continued: “In the streets of Tunisia, I found little desire to protest, and there was no sense of fear for the fate of Tunisian democracy.”
I came to report on the potential collapse of Tunisia’s democracy and was briefly detained. Then I got a lecture on the U.S. Constitution from the president of Tunisia, who vowed to preserve press freedoms but didn’t allow me to ask a single question https://t.co/eMplkEAwSi
— Vivian Yee (@VivianHYee) August 1, 2021
Vivian Yee, New York Times reporter
She added, “Tunisians continued their normal lives by shopping and sunbathing on the beaches, and a few taxi owners were listening to the news on the radio, leaving us wondering if Tunisians were seeking a Western-style democracy.”
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“Nearly every Tunisian I spoke to seemed happy, if not completely happy, with what Mr. Said had done, which is a testament to how bored they are,” Vivian said.
It is noteworthy that two days ago, the police detained the New York Times reporter (Vivien Yee) for two hours, while a Tunisian journalist and prominent human rights lawyer were prevented from entering the TV headquarters.
This came two days after Tunisian security forces stormed the office of Al-Jazeera.
At the time, journalist Vivian wrote on Twitter, “The Tunisian police detained us for two hours and then released us. We are continuing to report in Tunisia. Thanks for the good wishes.”
In a related matter, Tunisian journalist Amira Mohamed, vice-president of the Syndicate of Journalists, said that she and Bassam Al-Tarifi, vice-president of the Tunisian Association of Human Fields, were prevented from entering the television building, despite being summoned to attend a talk show, stressing the seriousness of this matter.
Amira said in a post on her Facebook page, “The freedom of the press in Tunisia is a red line, and the Presidency of the Republic must not prejudice the right to express opinion and work to separate security issues from media platforms.”
She concluded the post by saying, “Today they want to silence Tunisian television, and tomorrow they will silence everyone.”
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In an interview on Al Jazeera Mubasher, Reem Soudi, member of the Executive Office of the Syndicate of Tunisian Journalists, said that the Syndicate condemned the closure of Al Jazeera’s office and said that it represents a negative indication regarding freedom of the press and that the Syndicate is against every form of harassment and confiscation of opinion and other opinion.
Member of the Executive Office of the Syndicate of Tunisian Journalists, commenting on the storming of an office #Al Jazeera in a #Tunisia: This is a direct threat to liberties and we will not accept it #evening #Journalism is not a crime #Tunisia pic.twitter.com/a37OtwuDbZ
– Al Jazeera Mubasher (@ajmubasher) July 28, 2021
“We do not allow diversity and pluralism to be reversed, or even limited, or any change in the media landscape in general in Tunisia, and this is almost the only gain of the revolution of freedom and dignity, and therefore we will not give up on it,” she added.
Qais Saeed and his decisions
And Human Rights Watch said in a statement that President Kais Saied must guarantee the rights of all Tunisians and cancel the arbitrary decisions that have been taken since the announcement of the 25 July measures.
She added that the president said that he had the constitutional backing to control enormous powers, but what followed immediately was the police targeting journalists, which does not bode well for human rights.
The organization stated that President Saeed must allow the media – including Al Jazeera – to operate freely, and declare that he will not allow any violation of the right of all media to criticize his policies.
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