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Tunisia's political system likely to change: President's advisor talks about a possible referendum

Tunisian forces take security measures around parliament during a protest against suspending parliament, in Tunis, Tunisia on 26 July 2021 [Nacer Talel/Anadolu Agency]
Tunisian forces take security measures around parliament during a protest against suspending parliament, in Tunis, Tunisia on 26 July 2021 [Nacer Talel/Anadolu Agency]

Walid al-Hajjam, an advisor to the Tunisian president, told Reuters that there is a trend toward a change of the political system in Tunisia, perhaps through a referendum. He explained that the current constitution has become a major obstacle and is expected to remain suspended while a temporary system of governance is established.

Al-Hajjam said: "The president's plan is now a few steps away and is expected to be announced soon."

This disclosure comes after President Kais Saied pledged to confront what he said were attempts to infiltrate the country's security services in order to "serve the interests of certain sides." Saied made his threat while speaking on the sidelines of the ceremony of the 65th anniversary marking the establishment of the Tunisian National Guard, according to the presidency's Facebook page.

Tunisia has been experiencing a major political crisis since Saied decided last 25 July to freeze parliamentary activities, lift the immunity of deputies, dismiss the country's prime minister and assume the executive authority.

On 24 August, Saied extended his exceptional measures indefinitely, which sparked criticism, due to the continued state of ambiguity, as described by critics.

At present, the majority of Tunisia's parties have rejected Saied's measures, which some have described as a "coup against the constitution." Meanwhile, a small number of parties have supported the measures, claiming them to be a "corrective course of action."

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