LONDON: The Times newspaper in London on Wednesday named Mohamed Bouazizi, the Tunisian fruit-seller who unwittingly started a wave of protests known as the Arab Spring, as its person of 2011. The 26-year-old from a poor family set himself alight in the town of Sidi Bouzid on December 17, 2010, in protest against harassment by officials, and died from his burns in early January. His actions sparked a revolt that toppled president Zine El Abidine Ben Ali and ignited protests across the region which ultimately led to the fall of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak and Libyan leader Moamer Kadhafi. “Bouazizi takes his place with other figures whose willingness to see through the charade of oppressive rule elevated them beyond the drudgeries and petty humiliations of commonplace existence,” The Times said in an editorial.
Published in The Express Tribune, December 29th, 2011.