7 February 2013
Last updated at 18:49
The killing of anti-Islamist politician Chokri Belaid has sparked violent protests across Tunisia, with police firing tear gas to disperse demonstrators in Tunis and in the central town of Gafsa.
The tear gas in Tunis was fired in the heart of the city near the interior ministry, amid warnings that the chasm between Islamists and secular groups in the country is becoming unbridgeable.
The Tunis demonstrators managed to stage a march despite a huge deployment of security forces in and around Habib Bourguiba Avenue, epicentre of the 2011 uprising that toppled dictator Zine El Abidine Ben Ali.
The opposition and human rights groups say that threats and intimidation from the security forces are continuing. They have called for better protection for dissenting political figures following Mr Belaid's murder. The government insists it had nothing to do with his killing.
Protesters in central Tunis voiced their anger at the assassination of Mr Belaid by chanting: "Bread and water and no Ghannouchi" - a reference to Rachid Ghannouchi, the leader of the governing Ennahda party.
In Siliana, north-west of Tunis, protesters set fire to an Ennahda party office. Similar confrontations took place all over the country - a police station in the provincial town of Kelibia was attacked and in the mining town of Gafsa, protesters threw petrol bombs at police who responded with volleys of tear gas.
Mr Belaid was a respected human rights lawyer and a left-wing secular opponent of the government. Correspondents say that although his party did not have a large share of the election vote, it spearheaded popular concern over rising levels of political violence.
Hundreds of people gathered outside Mr Belaid's home on Thursday near the spot where a lone hooded gunman shot him dead. Many more accompanied his coffin as it was transported by ambulance through Tunis ahead of his funeral on Friday.
Critics of the government - including lawyers who went on strike - argue that the government has failed to find the young jobs, write a new constitution, compensate injured revolutionaries and handle growing insecurity.
An early end to the suffering is not immediately in sight. A general strike has been called on Friday, adding to mounting political instability that has prompted many tourists to opt for Morocco instead of Tunisia's renowned Mediterranean beaches.