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Ghannouchi: Al-Nahda agreed to neutralize key ministries in Tunisia

February 15, 2014 at 1:25 pm

The leader of the al-Nahda Movement, Rached Ghannouchi, stated on Wednesday that the movement has given up sovereign ministries within the Tunisian government currently being formed. It has been agreed that these ministries will be run by independents in accordance with key requirement of the political class.

Ghannouchi told Radio Kalima- Tunisia, “We have agreed to neutralize the four sovereign ministries, including the Ministry of Interior, which will be headed by figures from outside the parties.” He explained that the new government would be announced at the end of this week.

Ghannouchi stressed that the new government will be made up of five or six parties, as opposed to the three parties that formed the most recent government.

In the most recent government, Al-Nahda controlled the Ministry of Interior, the Ministry of Justice and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The Ministry of Defence has been led by an independent figure, Abed El-Karim Zubeidi, since the January 2011 revolution that ousted Zine El Abidine Ben Ali.

By taking this step, Al-Nahda will meet the demands expressed by an overwhelming majority of the opposition and its secular partners in the government, the Bloc Party and the Congress for the Republic headed by the Tunisian President, Moncef Marzouki.

The current Islamist Minister of Interior, Ali Al-Arid, was assigned to form a new government late last week. This followed the resignation of Hamadi Jebali amid refusals by his party – Al-Nahda – to form a government of technocrats.

Jabali made the suggestion following the assassination of anti-Islamist opposition figure, Shokry Belaid, when he asserted that it was the only solution to pull Tunisia out of its political paralysis and to avoid the outbreak of violence.