Politics & Law

The Future of Tunisia (and the Arab Spring)

Riddhi Dasgupta

The President’s pledge of $500 million to Tunisia has been a subject of some discussion. Surely, this monetary pledge was a show of support and encouragement to the fresh face of Tunisia.

This U.S. commitment may have been partially influenced by Tunisia’s soul-searching and new constitutionalism. The cradle of the Arab Spring, Tunisia ratified its new Constitution in late January and committed itself to the enshrinement of certain reforms. “All eyes around the world are fixed on Tunisia’s democratic experience,” the National Constituent Assembly (NCA) President Mustafa Ben Jaafar said.

The drafting of religion and secularism, individual rights, gender equality, corruption and presidential powers have all proved to be difficult but productive for the NCA members.

Yours truly co-led a British think-tank’s effort to produce a suggested draft Constitution that took into account comparative and international law. Our team consisted of 35 lawyers and social scientists globally. The team’s work received some coverage from PRI/NPR/BBC and CNN/Fortune Magazine. The goal was to aid the NCA and the Nation’s civil society, and the draft went live in September 2012.

Constitutions are mainly aspirational charters and this locating of the aspirations must be done by the citizens themselves.

NB: The General Rapporteur drafted the 2014 Constitution. Our report simply suggested various factors and analyses.

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Comment to "The Future of Tunisia (and the Arab Spring)":
    • Lotfi

      You got me curious. You keep saying this again and again, and I even saw your book on Amazon. Yet the evidence in the land of the heathens, and the public process we all saw in Tunis, says otherwise. Care to expand as to which parliamentary body in Tunisia commissioned you to write this text? Names of specific MPs/committees are of most interest to us.

      Best
      Lotfi

      [Report abuse]

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