Tunisia President Saied to Withdraw Diplomatic Passport of Former Leader Marzouki’

Tunisia’s president said on Thursday he would withdraw the diplomatic passport of former president Moncef Marzouki, who had demanded that France end its support for the Tunisian government.

President Kais Saied unveiled a new government on Monday, but gave no indication that he was ready to relinquish control after seizing a wide range of powers in July.

“I will withdraw his diplomatic passport because he is among the enemies of Tunisia,” Saied said, referring to Marzouki.

Last week, Marzouki, who was president from 2011 to 2014, called on the French authorities “not to help the dictatorial regime in Tunisia”.

Saied is under strong international pressure, especially from Western powers, to announce a clear road map for a return to constitutional politics.

Saied on Thursday asked the justice minister to open an investigation into allegations that Marzouki had conspired against state security.

He rejected Western involvement, saying it was a matter for Tunisians, adding: “We will not allow anyone to interfere.”

Thousands protested in Tunis last week against Saied’s seizure of almost total power, raising fears of further unrest.

His intervention followed years of economic stagnation and political paralysis, but it has cast into doubt the democratic gains made by Tunisians during a 2011 revolution that triggered the Arab Spring uprisings.


Arab Observer

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