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Tunisia’s Ghannouchi: ‘No room for conflict while facing coronavirus’

Tunisian Parliament Speaker Rashid Al Ghannouchi attends the 4th congress of Nahda movement student branches at Tunisia University in Tunis, Tunisia on 18 January 2020 [Yassine Gaidi/Anadolu Agency]
Tunisian Parliament Speaker Rashid Al Ghannouchi attends the 4th congress of Nahda movement student branches at Tunisia University in Tunis, Tunisia on 18 January 2020 [Yassine Gaidi/Anadolu Agency]

The speaker of the Tunisian People’s Assembly announced that Parliament’s activities must be maintained during the crisis.

Tunisia’s Parliament Speaker Rached Ghannouchi stated on Thursday that: “There is no room for conflict or disagreement. Our most urgent priority is unity in facing the crisis.”

This came in a speech delivered by Ghannouchi during the opening of a plenary session in Parliament, devoted to approving exceptional measures that guarantee the continuity of activities in Parliament and the country in general, while confronting the spread of COVID-19.

Addressing the deputies, Ghannouchi added: “Our unity is the secret of our strength in facing this challenge, as all the acting forces in the country expressed a collective awareness of necessity to unify the national front.”

He continued: “The successive developments require us to adapt our means of work towards it, and for this reason, the People’s Assembly needs to consider many proposals. It is imperative to maintain Parliament’s activities in accordance with new mechanisms that will be approved during this session.”

Ghannouchi added: “Parliament is to double its efforts in coordination with the executive authority to facilitate tasks and exchange information, enabling speed and effective interaction to achieve what the people demand.”

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He explained that: “The state does not fall behind in its duty to provide and organise the distribution of necessities such as food and medicines, in order to confront monopoly and fight those who are attempting to make fortunes by manipulating the provision of the people’s food and needs.”

The parliament speaker indicated that: “The Tunisian people must adhere to the decisions and recommendations issued by the state regarding the general quarantine and remain in their homes. Commitment and discipline is an expression of the spirit of citizenship and shared responsibility.”

Ghannouchi insisted that: “The war against the coronavirus will be a test for us all, for our values, unity and awareness.”

On Wednesday, Prime Minister Elyes Fakhfakh announced the establishment of a national body to combat the spread of the virus.

As of Wednesday, the country recorded 173 cases of infection with the virus, with five fatalities.

As of Thursday at noon, COVID-19 has affected more than 486,000 people worldwide, more than 22,000 of whom have died, while more than 117,000 have recovered.

The spread of COVID-19 has forced many countries to close their borders, suspend flights, impose curfews, shut down schools and universities, cancel events and public gatherings, as well as to close mosques and churches.

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AfricaCoronavirusNewsTunisia
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