Published daily by the Lowy Institute

Leila Ben Mcharek

Leila Ben Mcharek obtained her PhD in Cultural Studies from the Sorbonne-Nouvelle University (France) in 2000. She taught in two Tunisian universities (University of Kairouan and University of El Manar-Tunis) from 2000 to 2008. In 2009 she joined the British Embassy in Tunis as Political and Public Affairs Officer. In 2012, she joined the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) in Tunis as Human Rights Officer. She has been since 2013 honorary fellow at the Centre for Muslim States and Societies at the University of Western Australia. Her research is currently focussed on aspects of the Tunisian revolution within the Arab Spring context, and on the emergence of radical Islam post Arab Spring, including women jihadism.


Articles by Leila Mcharek (3)

  • Tunisia and Ennahda: Moving ahead with technical, not ideological, reform

    Media attention is back on Tunisia following recent startling declarations by Rached Ghannouchi and his political party, Ennahda, which was in power from late 2011 to early 2014. On 19 May, the eve of Ennahda's 10th Congress, Ghannouchi outlined to Le Monde the ideological changes taking place in his party. Ghannouchi said that Ennahda would 'leave Political Islam' and enter 'Democratic Islam'; an expression that draws an analogy with the Christian democratic parties of Western Europe.
  • The real Tunisian spring

    On 21 December 2014, Tunisians elected a president by universal suffrage for the first time in their history. The election marked the success of a democratic transition initiated when a popular uprising sparked by the death of a young street vendor, Mohamed Bouazizi, in Sidi Bouzid (central Tunisia) led to the ousting of dictator Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali on 14 January 2011. As the Tunisian revolution came to have a domino effect in the Arab world, marking the beginning of the Arab Spring, expect
  • Tunisians say 'no' to Sharia and set an example for the region

    The constitution of the second Tunisian Republic, adopted on 27 January, three years after the Tunisian Revolution, is considered almost a miracle: this Arab Muslim country succeeded in getting its Islamists and secularists to agree on a constitution that recognises the Tunisian state as a civil state based on citizenship, popular will and the rule of law.