Tunisia: Three Killed in Kasserine as Surge in CT Operations Continues

by | Jan 8, 2024 | Political, Security, Tunisia


On 27 December 2023, a large scale, multi-unit counterterrorism operation near the city of Kasserine resulted in the killing of three suspected terrorists by Tunisian security forces. 

The operation was preceded by multiple security operations in Kasserine during November and December, in which security forces detained a number of individuals on terrorism charges. 

These killings echo February 2022, when security forces also killed three suspected terrorists in Kasserine. 

In early January 2024, officials announced that 67 individuals identified as “takfirists” were arrested on terrorism charges between 1 December and 2 January. 


The Tunisian government has publicized numerous arrests of terrorism suspects in recent months. An observable increase in reported operations followed the escape from prison of five convicted terrorists and a shooting in Brussels by a Tunisian with a history of terrorist affiliations. 

The increase in reported operations could be part of an effort by Tunisian authorities to communicate competence and control over the environment. Communicating that Tunisia is secure will be essential heading into another year in which tourism may be the only bright spot in the flagging economy. Perceptions that the environment is less secure could lead tourists to look elsewhere for their vacations. 

In addition to managing perceptions, the threat from terrorism may be growing in Tunisia, particularly as socio-economic strains on rural communities increase vulnerability to radicalization. The war in Israel/Palestine could also be contributing to philosophical frustrations that may spur individuals to consider radicalization and subsequent acts of violence. This concern led European officials to raise the terror threat level in Europe. 


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