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Ennahda: Tunisia judiciary is being pressured to serve political agendas

October 8, 2021 at 6:01 pm

Supporters of Ennahda Movement in Tunis, Tunisia, on 27 February 2021 [Yassine Gaidi/Anadolu Agency]

The executive office of Tunisia’s Ennahda Movement yesterday expressed its “deep concern over pressure attempts to subdue the judiciary to serve political agendas, as well as the insults, skepticism and madness that judges have become liable to.”

In a statement published by the party on its Facebook page, the office stressed its “respect for the independence of the judiciary as a guarantor of rights, freedoms and justice.”

On the other hand, the office warned against “the dangers of targeting media outlets such as the “Al-Zaytouna” TV channel and detaining journalists or referring them to military courts without valid reasons,” considering these practices as “an infringement on the freedom of the press and media.”

The office also stressed its “Denouncement for the hatred and incitement discourse in recent time which the political discourse has witnessed for some time, and the attempts to divide Tunisians using accusations of treason, criminalisation and corruption, describing political opponents with base and inferior descriptions.”

Ennahda’s office pointed out that “tension has escalated after 25 July, 2021 in stark contrast with the foundations of coexistence and the ethics of democratic dialogue”.

READ: Tunisia arrests journalist for ‘committing despicable act against president’

The office reminded that “political competition within the same nation should stay in the context of diversity, difference and relativity” and that “it is the duty of all actors to exhibit the required communication and the media respect choice of words,” stressing “how important it is for state figures to commit to setting the example and be role models to ward off tension and support the bonds of national unity.

On 25 July, Tunisian President, Kais 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.