As violence continues in Egypt and, more unexpectedly, Tunisia, I have noted some similarities between the two developing situations.
In the simplest sense, Egypt and Tunisia are both moving through the first phases of transition from autocracy to democracy. But there are a number of other likenesses.
Not only are both countries witnessing increased divisions between Islamists and secular liberals, but their respective governments have failed to meet public expectations with regards to socio-economic reform and development.
Tunisia’s economy has struggled following an economic contraction of almost 2% in 2011.
A drawdown on tourism and agriculture production – affected by poor weather – has aggravated this situation.
Furthermore, in both Egypt and Tunisia, the initial transition process – government by political Islamic parties – has proved unpalatable for substantial numbers of the original 2011 revolutionaries.
The coming days will likely bring further violence while accommodation between these groups proves elusive.
The risks to travellers and businesses in both countries are likely to be incidental but clients should continue to monitor the situation and consider the right risk mitigation measures.