Middle East

Ex-Tunisia president calls for protests against Saied’s power grab

Moncef Marzouki suggests resignation of Tunisia’s president, parliament speaker as way out of country’s crisis

Yamena Salemi   | 09.10.2021
Ex-Tunisia president calls for protests against Saied’s power grab

TUNIS, Tunisia

Former Tunisian President Moncef Marzouki has called on Tunisians to stage protests on Sunday against the power grab by the country’s president, Kais Saied.

"I call on Tunisians to rally on Sunday in defense of the constitution, democracy, and national sovereignty,” Marzouki said in a video posted on his Facebook page.

On July 25, Saied ousted the government, suspended parliament, and assumed executive authority. While he insists that his "exceptional measures" are meant to "save" the country, critics accuse him of orchestrating a coup.

Marzouk’s call came as a protest movement known as “Citizens Against Coup” called for demonstrations on Sunday against Saied’s power seizure.

Marzouki suggested the resignation of Saied and Parliament Speaker Rached Ghannouchi and the convention of the assembly as a way out of the current political crisis in Tunisia.

“Free and transparent early elections can be held after a 45-day transitional period through which sovereignty can be returned to the people,” he said.

The majority of parties in Tunisia reject Saied’s power seizure, with some accusing him of orchestrating a coup against the constitution. Other parties, however, think Saied’s decisions are correct in light of the political, economic, and health crises the North African country is facing.

Tunisia has been seen as the only country that succeeded in carrying out a democratic transition among Arab countries which witnessed popular revolutions toppling ruling regimes, including Egypt, Libya, and Yemen.

*Writing by Ahmed Asmar

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