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Tunisia: suspension of parliament extended indefinitely

August 24, 2021 at 10:56 am

President of the Republic of Tunisia Kais Saied at the Royal Palace on 3 June 2021 in Brussels, Belgium [Olivier Matthys/Getty Images]

The suspension of parliament in Tunisia has been extended indefinitely by President Kais Saied, Anadolu has reported. Saied announced the initial 30-day suspension on 25 July.

Is Tunisia slipping into a dangerous pitfall?- Cartoon [Sabaaneh/MiddleEastMonitor]

Is Tunisia slipping into a dangerous pitfall?- Cartoon [Sabaaneh/MiddleEastMonitor]

The president also extended the suspension of MPs’ immunity, his office added. He will deliver a speech to the nation about this in the coming days.

On 25 July, Saied cited Article 80 of the constitution to dismiss Prime Minister Hicham Mechichi, freeze the work of parliament for 30 days, lift the immunity of ministers, and appoint himself as head of the executive authority until the formation of a new government.

This comes after violent protests broke out in several Tunisian cities criticising the government’s handling of the economy and the coronavirus. Demonstrators had called for parliament to be dissolved.

The majority of the country’s political parties slammed the move as a “coup against the constitution” and the achievements of the 2011 revolution.

To date, Saied has not appointed a new prime minister.

READ: Tunisia president says ‘there is no turning back’