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France: Tunisian Diaspora Open “The Blue Finger Club”

This post is part of our special coverage Tunisian Revolution 2011.

From October 20 to 22,  during  the three-day vote  for Tunisian living abroad,  Tunisian voters in France have joined the “Blue Fingers Club.”   Facebook and Twitter are flooded with pictures of inked-stained blue fingers, proof that they have – many for the first time in their lifetime- cast their ballots and are now part of the select club of early voters in the historical Tunisian constituent elections that culminates the Tunisian revolution.

One of the club new members, @Sonia_72 [fr], is ecstatic:

A voté, le cœur léger, un ciel bleu d'espoirs au bout du doigt, Youhouuu !

Has voted, with a light heart, and a blue sky full of hope at my finger tip,  Youhouuu!

Image by @sonia 72 on Twitter

Image by @Emnalamine on Twitter

The ballot boxes are full: Image by @Emnalamine on Twitter

Cell phones were forbidden during the vote. While standing in the queue, Emna Lamine took this picture in her poll station, in the Northern suburb of Paris. It confirms a large turnout for the diaspora:

Les urnes pleines!

The ballot boxes are full!

As a result, “Blue Fingers” have sprouted as fast as mushrooms on social networks in France. The picture below from Emna Ben Jemaa ‘s Facebook photo gallery “I have voted. And you?” has been published in media around the world. It is worth a thousand words to express the deep emotion Tunisians felt to be able to vote democratically.

A Tunisian in tears after voting in France – image by Emna Ben Jemaa

A Tunisian with his daughter after the vote: A day of pride – image by Emna Ben Jemaa

A young man shows off his vote for Tunisia- image by Emna Ben Jemaa

A Tumblr blog has also been created for new voters to upload the picture of  their blue fingers. Below are a few contributions.

Someone took her blue finger to the Eiffel Tower, to snap her Photo of the Year:

Voting in Paris

V spells victory, and voting:

V for victory

Someone sends a personal message to former president Zeine Al Abedine Ben Ali:

A special message to Ben Ali

The blue-finger set has gained a nickname in France:  “Stroumpfs” (Smurfs). Skydancer is feeling like a kid again.

The Smurfs make a come back

And A Photoshoped promise is sent over the Mediterranean sea to Tunisia, where voting has started today (October 23).

A promise of hope

Meanwhile, two young citizen reporters, Lynda El Awadey and Eléonore Bounhiol have collected video testimonies from voters in Paris [fr and ar]:

On Saturday, Zied Mhirsi (@Zizoo) worded this wish:

I hope that everyone in his life, lives days like this one, months like these ones, a revolution like this one #tunisia# tnelec

This post is part of our special coverage Tunisian Revolution 2011.

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