A total of thirteen hundred Tunisian citizens, who has been working in the Libyan Jamahiriyah, have been expelled by the Libyan government.
GV Cluster of buildings at Ras Agedir, Tunisia
SV & GV Expelled workers climb into truck (2 shots)
GV Cylindrical structure by road-side
GV & SV Workers being checked as they leave and walking towards vehicles (2 shots)
SV PAN INTERIOR Tunisians waiting for clearance
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Background: A total of thirteen hundred Tunisian citizens, who has been working in the Libyan Jamahiriyah, have been expelled by the Libyan government. The expulsion was interpreted as one of the consequences of a guerrilla raid on the Tunisian town of Gafsa on Sunday, January the twenty-seventh.
SYNOPSIS: The workers came across the Tunisian/Libyan border on Wednesday (6 February), at the Tunisian town of Ras Agedir.
They were put into trucks to be returned indirectly to their home towns. The expulsions were seen as an act of reprisal by the Libyan Jamahiriyah government in the tensions that followed the attack on Gafsa, a mining town in southern Tunisia. A total of forty-one people were killed, and one hundred and eleven wounded during the attack, which lasted for seven hours. Forty-two guerrillas were captured. Two days later, Tunisia expelled the Libyan ambassador, and accused the Libyans of training guerrillas who had taken part in the raid. But, on February the first, the Libyan government denied any involvement in the clashes, either directly or indirectly. The Libyan statement accused the Tunisian government of mounting a propaganda campaign against Libya, and challenged the Tunisian authorities to produce evidence of any Libyan involvement. Two days later, on February the third, a man said to have been a guerrilla leader in the attack, appeared on Tunisian television. Identified as Ezzedine Cheriff, he alleged the Libyan Jamahiriyah had paid for the operation. Mr. Cheriff said the attack had been planned in the Libyan capital, Triopoli, two years before, and that Libya would recognise the guerrillas, and provide arms, supplies and medical equipment. He claimed that two groups of Tunisians were expected to reinforce the Gafsa attackers, one batch coming from Libya, and the other from Lebanon. Relations between Tunisia and Libya have been strained since the collapse of a 1974 reunification agreement between the two countries.