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Ennahda party leader calls to criminalise 'glorification of the former regime'

August 14, 2014 at 1:48 pm

Tunisia’s Ennahda party leader Rachid Ghannouchi called on Wednesday for the Tunisian Parliament to pass a law “criminalising the glorification of the former regime of ousted President Ben Ali”, saying it represents a form of terrorism and an invitation to return to the times of darkness and corruption, Al-Araby Al-Jadeed news site reported.

Tunisian deputies have called to criminalise the behaviour within an anti-terrorism law that is currently under review.

The news site quoted Ghannouchi as saying, “There are two types of terrorism: terrorism that calls for a return to the times of darkness and terrorism that calls for a return to the times of corruption.”

Ghannouchi made his remarks during a speech to the members of his party to mark the national day of Tunisian women.

The gathering commended the rights granted for women, family and child in the new constitution and the state’s quest to achieve equality within elected assemblies and to enhance women’s gains and the protection of their rights.

Ghannouchi announced that his party would include several female candidates as heads of the party’s electoral lists in the upcoming legislative elections.

Meanwhile, the party welcomed in a statement the victory of Recep Tayyip Erdogan in the Turkish presidential election, saying it is “a victory for realism and Islamic moderation, at a time when ideas of militancy and currents of extremism and terrorism are emerging in the name of Islam”.

The movement said Erdogan’s victory supports the Arab Spring and its key demands of freedom, dignity and justice as well as supports the Palestinian cause and the right of its people to freedom and emancipation. The party praised the “Turkish people and political elite’s adherence to democracy and acceptance of the popular will”, saying that Erdogan’s winning in the first round represents a popular consensus of his policies and “increases his popularity and the popularity of his party, despite premeditated media and publicity campaigns and the repeated attempts to undermine his image”.

The party said that Erdogan’s victory represents a victory for the Justice and Development Party, which presents a model of good governance and has furthered the development of Turkey’s economic and political wellbeing after it was on the brink of collapse in 2002.

Ennahda also said that Erdogan’s victory is also a victory for the Turkish national current, which has achieved the Turkish aspirations in development without abandoning support for just causes, particularly the Palestinian issue.

The party said that Arab and Islamic societies must achieve stability, build national unity and entrench democracy and freedom in order to achieve development and to overcome poverty and underdevelopment.