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Four days after Islamist militants shot dead 21 tourists in Tunisia's Bardo museum last year, police rounded up dozens of people suspected of links with the gunmen.Several recent cases of police abuse – which the Tunisian government acknowledges still sometimes occurs – underscore the difficult path Tunisia is treading as it tries to both nurture the young democracy it founded after the 2011 revolution and simultaneously fight Islamist militants.Like France, Belgium and other victims of Islamist bombings and attacks, Tunisia is trying to figure out how to protect people while also protecting their rights.Rights groups such as Amnesty International and lawyers say cases of abuse at police detention, arbitrary arrests and torture have emerged, undermining the new democracy.At the same time, the Islamist threat has many people calling for a harsh crackdown.President Beji Caid Essebsi regularly tells Tunisians they are at war with militants trying to attack its democracy.After the Bardo attack, some conservative young Tunisians began shaving off their beards and avoiding going to pray to evade police sweeps in poorer Tunis neighborhoods.
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