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Tunisia protesters torch ruling Islamist party office

Nov. 27, 2013 8:14 P.M. (Updated: Nov. 27, 2013 8:14 P.M.)
TUNIS (AFP) -- Several hundred protesters set fire on Wednesday to the office of Tunisia's ruling Islamist party in the neglected Gafsa region, one of several areas on strike, an AFP journalist reported.

The demonstrators attacked the Ennahda party's headquarters in the poor central region after trying to break into the regional governor's office, where they were dispersed by police.

The protesters seized files and furniture from the office and burned them in the road, while preventing firemen from gaining access to the building.

There was no immediate sign of the police.

As in the other regions of Gabes and Siliana, Gafsa ground to a halt on Wednesday as a general strike was observed.

The strike was called to protest against poverty and lack of development, driving factors behind the popular uprising that toppled Tunisia's former strongman Zine El Abidine Ben Ali in January 2011.

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