The Tunisian government has declared three days of national mourning beginning Friday.

Tunisians have lowered flags and state television is playing recitations of the Quran to mourn dozens who died in protests that drove the country’s iron-fisted president from power.

The government has declared three days of national mourning beginning Friday.

The interior minister says 78 civilians were killed in nearly a month of protests, many shot by police during protests over unemployment, corruption and repression. A French photographer was also killed as were some members of the security forces, and scores of people were injured.

President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali fled to Saudi Arabia a week ago. The caretaker government is struggling to restore calm.

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