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Tunisian presidential candidate to remain in jail

September 19, 2019 at 8:25 am

Members of the Tunisian security forces stand guard as supporters of presidential candidate Nabil Karoui carry placards with his image and slogans in his favour as they rally in front of the tribunal in the Tunisian capital Tunis asking for his release from prison on 3 September 2019. [Yassine Gaidi – Anadolu Agency]

A Tunisian court has again turned down a request to release jailed media tycoon Nabil Karoui, who along with law professor Kais Saied has reached a runoff in the country’s presidential elections, Anadolu reports.

Karoui, the candidate of the Qalb Tounes (Heart of Tunisia) party, advanced to the second round against Saied, the independent candidate, in Sunday’s polls.

The judge has refused to give a ruling, saying it was not in his jurisdiction, the party said in a statement.

READ: Kaïs Saïed announces he will visit Algeria first if he wins the presidency 

Courts have previously turned down requests to release Karoui for the same reason, the statement said.

Karoui was accused of financial crimes following an investigation by an anti-corruption group.

On July 8, a court ordered Karoui and his brother’s assets to be frozen and imposed a travel ban.

Karoui was arrested on Aug. 23 on charges of money laundering and tax evasion.

According to official results, Saied secured 18.4% of the vote while Karoui came in second with 15.6%