The second round of Tunisia’s presidential election is likely to be a close fight after the results of the first round, announced today, showed a tighter-than-expected finish between Beji Caid Essebsi and Moncef Marzouki
2012 saw continuing crisis in the eurozone, growing Euroscepticism and populism in some corners of Europe, faltering transitions in Egypt and elsewhere, more violence in Syria, a new leadership in China, and both Putin II and Obama II. So what will 2013 hold?
Islamists are in charge in Egypt and Tunisia because they were chosen by the voters in free elections; not because they won the battle for the streets. What is happening in the Arab countries is not an ideological revolution – it is a fight over the distribution of political power.
The outcome of the uprisings in North Africa is still in the balance and although it will be mainly up to the North Africans themselves to decide their future, Europe has a key role to play on the side of reform – especially Paris, Rome and Madrid.