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Sporadic clashes overnight despite Tunisia curfew

TUNIS, Tunisia — Sporadic shots have rung out overnight outside Tunisia's capital, despite a state-ordered curfew amid clashes between police and stone-throwing youths who are angry about high unemployment.
Sounds of clashes and rounds from firearms echoed in some parts of Tunis' suburbs as youths defied the order by President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali's government of a curfew aimed at calming recent unrest.
France-Info radio reported Thursday that central Tunis was spared any upheaval overnight and that life returned gradually to normal at daybreak.
A day earlier, the army deployed armored vehicles in the capital.
The demonstrations have set off clashes with police as they spread around the country, leaving at least 23 dead and shattering Tunisia's image as an island of calm in volatile North Africa.
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