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Tunisia's autocratic President Kais Saied, since his dramatic power grab in 2021, has increased the volume of repression in the north African nation, arresting scores of opposition figures as well as civil activists and journalists. The country's fledgling democracy is on life support. Yet Western governments are supporting Saied, believing that his iron grip can stave off a fresh exodus of illegal migrants from Europe and that financial assistance will hold Russia and China at bay. 

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