TUNIS, Tunisia — The Tunisian parliament has voted overwhelmingly to outlaw racial discrimination and to make criminal offenders eligible for prison time.
Lawmakers passed the measure late Tuesday. The legislation was a response to the assault of a man from Ivory Coast on a Tunis street in July that triggered reaction online and denunciation from anti-racism associations.
Thousands of students from sub-Saharan Africa attend Tunisian universities, and some face sporadic verbal or physical aggression because of their skin color.
The new law defines racial discrimination as "any distinction, exclusion, restriction or preference based on race, color, ancestry" or other discrimination that lead to "disturbances, an obstruction or privation."
It allows prison sentences of up to three years for convictions and fines equivalent to 300 to 1,000 euros ($345-$1,152.)