mergency services at the scene of Monday’s blast in Tunis. Photograph: Fethi Belaid/AFP/Getty Images mergency services at the scene of Monday’s blast in Tunis. Photograph: Fethi Belaid/AFP/Getty Images

Central Tunis hit by suicide bomb blast

Mon, Oct. 29, 2018
TUNIS - 29 October 2018: A woman has launched a suicide bomb attack in central Tunis, injuring nine people, the Tunisian interior ministry has said.

The 30-year-old set off the “terrorist explosion” just before 2pm, a ministry spokesman said, adding that eight policeman were among the injured.

Police have cordoned off an area on Habib Bourguiba avenue, near the Tunisian capital’s landmark Municipal Theatre. Tunisia’s TAP news agency reported that the explosion occurred in front of the Palmarium shopping centre.

Ambulances could be heard rushing to the scene.

“I was in front of the theatre and heard a huge explosion and saw people fleeing,” said Mohamed Ekbal bin Rajib.

Tunisia, which is heavily dependent on tourism, has improved security since a series of militant attacks targeting tourists caused the near collapse of the sector three years ago.

In 2015, 21 people were killed during a hostage siege in its national museum, the Bardo in Tunis, and a gunman killed 38 people – including 30 Britons – on a resort beach.

There have been no attacks on that scale since then, but the economy has remained troubled and the authorities worry about militants who shelter in neighbouring Libya.

Tunisia is one of the few Arab democracies, and the only country to throw off a long-serving autocrat during the Arab Spring popular revolts of 2011 without triggering large scale unrest or civil war.
 
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