American School in Tunisia Reopens after Muslim Attack: Salafi Riot at US Embassy in Tunis
An American school in Tunisia that was attacked during protests over an anti-Islam video has re-opened. A massive demonstration was held outside the US Embassy in Tunis On September 14th, culminating in a group of angry youths, thought to be part of a Salafi movement, setting the nearby American Cooperative School of Tunisia on fire, causing extensive damage. Manager of American Cooperative School of Tunis Faouzi Ben Sedrine "We don't know in particular who they are, but unfortunately, part of the Salafists -- the jihadist part --and then all the people who did not have jobs, who want to take advantage of this situation and they shouldn't be acting this way, they shouldn't. Don't do this to an education institution. Look the way they turned the books." Tunisian authorities have subsequently arrested a Salafi member of Ansar al-Shariah, an al-Qaeda-linked group, citing his possible links to attacks on the US Embassy and the school. Tunisia, the cradle of the Arab Spring, is struggling to contain the ultra-conservative Salafi, whose protests have been intensifying since authoritarian president, Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, was overthrown by a popular uprising last year. Salafis oppose secular government and want Tunisia to reject the west and embrace Islamic fundamentalism. Known for their mercurial ability to incite anger and violent protest, the Salafi agitation began months before the anti-Muslim film, attacking secularists, artists and establishments selling alcohol.