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Tunisian man sets himself on fire to protest unemployment

By Saad Abedine and Holly Yan, CNN
updated 8:39 PM EDT, Tue March 12, 2013
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • The man is taken to the same hospital where Mohamed Bouazizi was taken
  • Bouazizi is credited for sparking the Arab Spring protests across the region
  • Self-immolation has become more common in the region

(CNN) -- A 27-year-old man protesting unemployment set himself on fire in the Tunisian capital, Tunis, authorities said Tuesday.

The man suffered third-degree burns, Tunisia's national civil protection and civil defense authorities said.

He was taken to the same hospital where Mohamed Bouazizi was taken in December 2010.

Bouazizi, who died after setting himself on fire, was widely credited for spurring Arab Spring uprisings across North Africa and the Middle East.

Tunisia's bubbling unrest

The 26-year-old street vendor earned about $10 a day selling fruit.

But after a municipal inspector seized his belongings, Bouazizi -- in an act of economic despair -- doused himself with fuel and set himself ablaze in front of a government building.

The fatal protest unleashed a wave of regional dissent against oppression, government corruption and stifled freedoms.

Self-immolation has since become more common in the Arab world, with people setting themselves on fire in Tunisia, Jordan, Bahrain and Morocco.

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