The number of tourists that visited Tunisia thus far in 2017 reached 4.58 million according to the Tunisian Ministry of Tourism in a statement reported by the local media. The Tunisian radio did not specify, however, what was the rate of tourism growth compared to the same period of last year. According to FM Radio Express, tourists from neighbouring countries numbered 1.45 million of this overall figure, or 60.7% more compared to 2016. Up by 16%, the increase in the number of European tourists is also substantial, per the Tunisian Ministry of Tourism of the anticipated total 6.5 million tourists this year. These statistics were however objected to in Tunisia where some observers noted that these included all non-residents, i.e. Tunisians living abroad as well as a decreasing number of sub-Saharan students in Tunisia. Wagdy Sawahel, in a University World News of September 1st, 2017, Issue No:472 elaborates on this particular segment . . .
Here is a story written by Christin Roby @robyreports and published by Devex on 28 August 2017 that is a good recollection of what is happening in the outer edges of the MENA region. In fact, it is in the Sahel region that borders the south of all the North African countries (see map below) from as it were the Atlantic coast to its Indian counterpart coast. The narrated events in this particular story happened to have all occurred in what is called Azawad since time immemorial by the North African Berber populations. These populations are known throughout North Africa as Blue Men or Tuaregs for roaming notably in the south-eastern limits of the Sahara. Azawad is the country to be but never made it to go it alone beyond that April day of 2012.