Suicide Bombing In Tunisia Leaves Three Dead

Three people are counted among the casualties of a suicide bombing near the U.S. embassy in Tunisia on Friday, March 6. Two unidentified terrorists rode toward the embassy on a motorcycle rigged with a large amount of explosives, detonating them, killing themselves, a police officer, and injuring five others. There is no report on the condition of the four injured police officers or the one civilian. However, they are believed to be in stable condition. As of yet, no group has claimed responsibility for the attack.

Sufyan al-Sulaiti, the Tunisian spokesperson for the anti-terror judicial branch commented on the attack saying, “we are outraged by this attack and saddened to hear of reports of one fatality from Tunisian’s security forces.” In addition to then applauding the Tunisian security forces on their quick response to the incident, al-Sulaiti affirmed that the State Department and local authorities are working together to investigate the supposed terrorist attack. The U.S. embassy also weighed in on the events in the capital, Tunis, as the U.S. ambassador, Donald Blome, similarly thanked the security forces and tweeted a statement saying, “we reaffirm our commitment to our longstanding friendship with Tunisia and our alliance with them against the scourge of terrorism.”

Tunisia has struggled with controlling terrorism over the past decade, with the Arab Spring in 2011 originating within its borders. While most terror attacks since have been aimed at police, which seem to have been the target in this instance as the motorcycle drove towards a police car, there have been civilian casualties as well. The country’s population also seems to be relatively highly susceptible to the violent extremist views of Al Qaeda and the Islamic State, as at least 5,500 civilians have joined their causes in Syria and Iraq. However, it remains unclear whether these suicide bombers were acting in conjunction with either of the militant groups.

Tunisia remains susceptible to such recruitment because of its ideology and promises. In Tunisia, the government has been hobbling towards creating stable democratic institutions after the fall of Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali in 2011. The power vacuum allowed such militant groups to instill their ideology into the population in an attempt to gain a foothold in the country, the geography of which allows easy movements in and out of neighboring Libya. Peaceful resolutions to these new waves of terrorism can only be accomplished by members of the local community doing peaceful recruitment of their own, such as discrediting such violent ideology. Harsher military measures may help the initial problems on the surface. However, only battling the ideology can secure a peaceful future.