Tunisians set fire to building after migrant tragedy

(File, AP)
(File, AP)

Tunis - Relatives of Tunisians who drowned after a migrant boat collided with a navy vessel at the weekend set fire to a local government building on Thursday in protest, officials and an NGO said.

Interior ministry spokesperson Yasser Mesbah said around 40 Tunisians torched the building in the central town of Souk Lahad and tried to set on fire a police station.

Police fired tear gas to disperse the protesters, he said.

At least eight migrants drowned on Sunday after their boat sank following a collision with a Tunisian navy vessel in the Mediterranean, while 38 others were rescued, the defence ministry has said.

NGOs say around 40 more people are still missing.

Romdhane Ben Amor, of the Tunisian Forum for Economic and Social Rights NGO, said the protesters were relatives and friends of three migrants who died and of some of the missing.

According to Ben Amor, the demonstrators set fire to the building to protest against "the attitude of the government" who they say is not being forthcoming with information about their loved ones.

"There is a lot of tension and anger," Ben Amor said.

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For only R75 per month, you have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today.
Subscribe to News24
Lockdown For
DAYS
HRS
MINS
Voting Booth
Would you choose to continue working from home after the coronavirus lockdown if given the option?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
Yes, it's much better for me
40% - 7955 votes
No ways! I can't wait to get back to the office
12% - 2304 votes
A mixture of both would suit me best
48% - 9649 votes
Vote
USD/ZAR
14.26
(+0.3)
GBP/ZAR
19.67
(+0.8)
EUR/ZAR
17.09
(+0.8)
AUD/ZAR
11.06
(+0.7)
JPY/ZAR
0.13
(+0.7)
Gold
1,776.87
(+0.8)
Silver
26.11
(+1.0)
Platinum
1,204.01
(+0.6)
Brent Crude
66.94
(+0.5)
Palladium
2,760.25
(+0.5)
All Share
68,403
(+0.9)
Top 40
62,595
(+0.8)
Financial 15
12,351
(+0.1)
Industrial 25
88,800
(+0.2)
Resource 10
70,224
(+2.0)
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes Iress logo