Tunisians took to the streets on Sunday demanding the resignation of Prime Minister Mohammed Ghanoucci, whom they denounced as part of the former regime that was toppled three weeks ago. Not widely reported by the media was that many of Sunday’s protesters were screaming “Death to the Jews” as they marched:
This is a new phenomenon,” said the source. “Until now, we have not heard this. Perhaps the people were thinking it, but we have not heard it. Now they feel free to say what they wish, what is in their hearts.”
Members of the Jewish community are meanwhile staying out of sight, the source said. “Jews are very afraid, and trying not to show themselves.”
Two days earlier, on Friday, a smaller group of dozens of Islamists held an anti-Jewish rally outside the country’s main synagogue shouting, “Jews wait, the army of Mohammed is coming back. “We’ll redo the battle of Khaibar!” – a reference to the slaughter of Jews in what is now Saudi Arabia at the hands the founder of Islam.
Jewish community leader Roger Bismuth subsequently met with Ghanoucci to request increased security in light of the new threat. Officials in the Tunisian Interior Ministry said the government would “spare no effort to safeguard” civic rights and freedoms, including respect for peaceful co-existence.