Tunisia: Mixed Reactions to Hacking of Prime Minister's Emails

On April 8 Anonymous Tunisia (which claims affiliation with the hacking group Anonymous) hacked the emails of the Tunisian prime minister Hamadi Jebali. The movement dubbed it “Operation Touche pas à ma Tunise” (“Get Your Hands Off My Tunisia”) which is part of the broader “Operation Tunisia Back”.

Anonymous Tunisia logo

On the eve of the revolution in 2011 Anonymous members worldwide targeted several governmental websites in what was known as Operation Tunisia. Anonymous also recently launched online attacks against Tunisian Islamists. Now it has published 2,725 emails of Tunisia's ruling Ennahda party online, including emails of the prime minister.

Phone numbers belonging to key government officials have since been circulating on Facebook pages. The government was caught by surprise and so far has not reacted. Meanwhile, netizens have been divided over the efficacy of the move.

Bassem Meddeb tweeted enthusiastically about the search through thousands of emails:

@bmeddeb: Finalement #Anonymous nous a engagé comme détectives! #jbelileaks

Finally #Anonymous has hired us as detectives! #jbelileaks

Hmida Ben Jemmaa wrote mockingly:

@HBJtn: Après le #JbeliLeaks, le bureau politique d'Ennahdha décide de correspondre avec des… pigeons voyageurs.

After #JbeliLeaks, Ennahda's political bureau decides to communicate via…homing pigeons.

Operation Tunisia Back logo

However, some Twitter users opposed the hacking operation.

Hmida Ben Jemmaa wrote that he condemned the attack, and added:

التدخّل الأجنبي في شؤوننا الدّاخلية خطّ أحمر
Foreign interference in our internal affairs is a line that should not be crossed

Medical student Amine Ghrabi questioned the point of the Anonymous operation and tweeted:

@HendrixTN: Petite pensée à tous ceux qui ont gâché leur matinée dominicale à fouiller la boite mail d'un incompétent confirmé ! #JbeliLeaks

A small thought for all those who ruined their Sunday morning searching the inbox of a confirmed bungler! #JbeliLeaks

Alkimia tweeted:

@alkimia5550: بجدكم توا معملين تلقاو كارثة في #JbeliLeaks
Do you seriously want to find a catastrophe in #JbeliLeaks?

And added:

@alkimia5550: Anonymous a menacé les Islamistes depuis qq mois.Il ne serait pas malin s'il n'a pas nettoyé

Anonymous has been threatening the Islamists for the last few months. He [the prime minister] wouldn't be smart if he hadn't cleaned up [his inbox]

Student Imed Laaridh, a supporter of Ennahda, tweeted that he would strike back:

@ImedLaaridh: On est peut être parti pour un tour de piratage réciproque. On trouvera de quoi passer le temps.. #TnPolitics #JbeliLeaks

Perhaps we have started a round of mutual hacking. We will find something to spend our time on… #TnPolitics #JbeliLeaks

The following video [Fr] is from Anonymous Tunisia. A member of Anonymous speaks about the leak of the prime minister's emails, and the forthcoming release of more documents:

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