Tunisians Watch Egypt, Tend Their Own Revolution As Egypt explodes in violence against the 30-year-rule of President Hosni Mubarak, the situation in Tunisia, which overthrew its dictator two weeks ago, has calmed. A new transition cabinet has been sworn in and free elections are set to take place within six months. Though their own revolution is far from finished, Tunisians are proud of what they have sparked in the Arab world.
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Tunisians Watch Egypt, Tend Their Own Revolution

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Tunisians Watch Egypt, Tend Their Own Revolution

Tunisians Watch Egypt, Tend Their Own Revolution

Tunisians Watch Egypt, Tend Their Own Revolution

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  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/133348376/133348356" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
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As Egypt explodes in violence against the 30-year-rule of President Hosni Mubarak, the situation in Tunisia, which overthrew its dictator two weeks ago, has calmed. A new transition cabinet has been sworn in and free elections are set to take place within six months. Though their own revolution is far from finished, Tunisians are proud of what they have sparked in the Arab world.

LIANE HANSEN, Host:

Eleanor Beardsley is back in Tunis. She sends this report.

ELEANOR BEARDSLEY: Life is slowly returning to normal in Tunis. Cafes are once again crowded with coffee drinkers soaking up the winter sun and stores have reopened.

(SOUNDBITE OF SHUTTERS OPENING)

BEARDSLEY: Enda Bassouni opened the shutters on her perfume boutique. She says sales are still way below normal, but life is better. She's says she's been watching what's going on in Egypt and is worried about all the deaths and violence. But she's pulling for the people.

ENDA BASSOUNI: (through translator) There are a lot of common points between Tunisia and Egypt and I want that government to leave. It's worse than a monarchy. He should be getting ready to flee to Saudi Arabia like our president.

BEARDSLEY: Mohamed Khelimi, who spent many years in jail under Tunisian autocrat Ben Ali, says it is marvelous to see what's going on in Egypt.

MOHAMED KHELIMI: I think that we have export a model of revolution, clean and pacifist revolution to all the dictator. This is very nice for all the Arab countries. I feel good, very, very, very nice. I cry victory.

(SOUNDBITE OF PEOPLE TALKING)

BEARDSLEY: Unidentified Man: (foreign language spoken)

BEARDSLEY: Unidentified Man #2 (Waiter): (foreign language spoken)

(SOUNDBITE OF PEOPLE TALKING)

BEARDSLEY: Thirty-five-year-old Rhoudani Whaleed, who describes himself simply as a father, sums up the sentiment.

RHOUDANI WHALEED: (through translator) Humanity is conquering technology and here we are struggling for basic human rights and respect. We were all but forgotten. But now a giant tsunami has just hit the Arab world.

BEARDSLEY: Eleanor Beardsley, NPR News, Tunis.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

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