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Tunisians rally for rights of women

Tunisians chanted slogans supporting women’s rights. Several thousand people rallied in Tunis on Tuesday.

Fethi Belaid/AFP/Getty Images

Tunisians chanted slogans supporting women’s rights. Several thousand people rallied in Tunis on Tuesday.

TUNIS — Thousands of people rallied in Tunisia on Tuesday in support of women’s rights amid national debate about a landmark constitution for the Arab world.

Two competing demonstrations were held in Tunis to mark a national day celebrating women.

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The one organized in support of the governing Islamist party Ennahda drew a few hundred people, while several thousand attended another organized by groups celebrating Tunisia’s unusually women-friendly policies that preceded the Islamist leadership.

No violence was reported, though security was tight. Tunisia has struggled with violence involving ultraconservative Muslims pushing for stricter Islamic policies.

Tunisia is crafting its first constitution since an uprising that led to the Arab Spring democratic revolts. Its language on women’s rights is among sensitive issues.

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