The dominant Islamist Ennahda party wants to abandon the protest calls. The European Union calls for the preservation of democracy.
After the dismissal of Prime Minister Hicham Mechichi on Tuesday, the situation in Tunisia has calmed down. In the capital, Tunis, security forces continued to cordon off the parliament building and key government facilities. President Kais Saied also ordered the suspension of all work in public institutions for two days. Ennahda, the country’s largest party, initially declined to call for protests.
A nighttime curfew will be in place again until the end of August. This has been done several times to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. Saeed had abruptly dismissed the prime minister on Sunday evening and suspended parliament.
The moderate Islamist Ennahda party has called for political dialogue and initially wants to drop the protest calls. Two representatives of the Ennahda movement said Tuesday morning that the party leadership decided to avoid any escalation and ordered a period of calm. With this, the party made a turning point, because immediately after the expulsion of Al-Mashichi, the Speaker of Parliament and the head of the Ennahda Party, Rached Ghannouchi, called for street protests. The House floor remained empty on Tuesday. Serious clashes took place between Said’s supporters and Fon Ennahda on Monday.
Call for a “common way” out of the crisis
Civil society groups, Saeed, called on Tuesday, not to extend the exceptional political conditions for more than a month. In addition, Saeed must show a “common way” to get out of the crisis, as stated in a statement by the groups that include journalists, human rights activists, and human rights activists. According to the union, Saeed himself is committed to democratic values in a speech on Monday evening.
The European Union called on the Tunisian president to end the blockade imposed on Parliament. The EU’s foreign affairs chief, Josep Borrell, declared on Tuesday on behalf of the 27 EU countries that institutional stability should be restored as soon as possible. This includes in particular the resumption of parliamentary operations. The consolidation of democracy in the country and its respect for the rule of law, the constitution and the legal framework must be preserved.
Mechichi wants to hand over responsibility to his successor
Michichi himself declared that he wanted to hand over responsibility – as the president had ordered – to his successor. “I can never be a crippling factor or part of the problem that complicates the situation,” he assured him late on Monday night. He will abdicate the responsibility to “protect the safety of all Tunisians”. This announcement was his first public statement after he was stripped of power.
Michichi assumed the position of Prime Minister in September 2020. He had the support of the two strongest parties in Parliament, the conservative Islamist Ennahda Party and “Kaleb Tounes” (Qalb Tounes). Like the Meshishi, the two parties disagree with President Saeed. Tensions between Saeed and Mechishi increased after the president refused to swear in the oath of nearly a dozen new ministers in January.
(APA / dpa / Reuters)
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