Tunisia on track to democracy, risks remain: UN

Thu Feb 24, 2011 3:29pm GMT

"We would like it to be stabilised and we are not naive to think in this process there will not be hiccups because the powers out there are huge," she added.

Transitional authorities are holding wide consultations, political parties are registering and the constitution has to be amended to allow a proper multi-party system, she said.

"It is very important that there will be a clear signal elections are taking place soon," Rishmawi said.

"What we'd like to see is a clear roadmap, a clear process that leads to elections and a representative and responsible government to be put in place," she said.

The U.N. officials also called on Tunisian authorities to open judicial investigations into allegations of human rights violations, prosecute perpetrators and compensate victims.

"Immediate steps need to be taken to ensure that no evidence of human rights abuses is tampered with or destroyed. While on the ground, the delegation heard rumours that some archives had already been burnt or looted," the 18-page report said.

Tunisian migrant workers fleeing violence in neighbouring Libya are returning to their homeland in droves.

"The return of thousands of Tunisians will constitute a big challenge in terms of stability, in terms of the social and economic situation in Tunisia," said Frej Fenniche, chief of the Middle East and North Africa section of the U.N. rights office.

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