Foreign ministry warns of Tunisian riots

The Austrian foreign ministry has appealed to tourists travelling to Tunisia to stay away from demonstrations.At least 35 people have been killed and hundreds injured in street riots which recently broke out as young Tunisians demonstrated against soaring foodstuff prices and a lack of perspectives in the country.The ministry announced yesterday (Mon) the safety level has decreased in several parts of the country which is a popular holiday destination for many Austrians.Tunisian tourism hotspots “are still relativity safe”, according to the foreign ministry which nevertheless called on holidaymakers to be “carefully and attentive”. The ministry said tourists should “stay away from protest actions under all circumstances” and avoid travelling to regions in the centre of the country.The Austrian foreign ministry¬ís “partial travel warning” for the Tunisian Sahara regions has been valid for some years. Austrian couple Andrea Kloiber and Wolfgang Ebner were held captive by a local militant group linked to al-Qaida in the desert for eight months before being freed in August 2008.Thousands took to the streets in many cities of the country after a 26-year-old man set himself on fire in protest after a police unit seized the farming products he was trying to sell to make ends meet.