Opponents of Tunisian President Kais Saied protest in Tunis, September 2021
Zoubeir Souissi / Reuters

A year ago, Tunisia’s fledgling democracy—the last to survive after a series of popular uprisings swept the Arab world in 2011—faced a severe test after an extraordinary self-coup by President Kais Saied on July 25, 2021. Within a matter of hours, Saied fired Tunisia’s prime minister, suspended its democratically elected parliament for 30 days, and assumed all executive power. Saied justified his actions by citing Article 80 of Tunisia’s 2014 constitution, which allows a president who determines that the country is facing “imminent danger” to take “any measures necessitated by the exceptional circumstances.”

But what was initially described as a temporary

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