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Tunisia's Ennahda supports initiative to form political front against the 'coup'

April 15, 2022 at 12:25 pm

Tunisian opposition leader Ahmed Najib Chebbi in Tunis, Tunisia on 14 February 2022 [Yassine Gaidi/Anadolu Agency]

Tunisia’s Ennahda movement welcomed on Thursday the initiative of Ahmed Najib Chebbi, head of Al-Amal Party’s political committee, to form a broad political front to counter the “coup.”

This came in a statement issued by Ennahda and signed by its president, Rachid Ghannouchi.

The statement said that “the Ennahda movement welcomes the initiative of the patriot Ahmed Najib Chebbi, which calls for the formation of a broad political front that supports all approaches, unifies efforts to counter the coup, and offers alternatives and solutions to save the country from its multiple crises.”

Last Sunday, Chebbi delivered a speech during a demonstration in the capital Tunis in which he called for the formation of a “national salvation front” and the convening of an inclusive national conference.

As for Saied’s accusations of his opponents betrayal, collusion with foreign entities and violations of national sovereignty, Ennahda affirmed “its loyalty to the country’s sovereignty and its full respect for all its policies.”

While commenting on the economic and social crisis in the country, Ennahda held President Saied and his government “responsible for their failure and inability to manage the country and overburdening the citizens with taxes.”

READ: Tunisia Labour Union warns against ‘tampering’ with country

In addition, Ennahda held Saied responsible for “the failure to control the sharp increases in prices and considerable shortage of several basic foodstuffs, especially during the holy month of Ramadan, as well as the shortage of a number of medicines.”

The Tunisian economy is facing its worst crisis since the country became independent in 1956. It is a result of the political instability that followed the 2011 revolution which toppled the former President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali. There are ongoing fears that the fall out from the Covid-19 pandemic, and the Russia-Ukraine war will also exacerbate the severity of the current crisis.

In the same context, Ennahda called on Saied to halt exploiting the Ministry of the Interior to target his political opponents.

Since 25 July 2021, Tunisia has been plunged into a political crisis after Saied began the imposition of exceptional measures including: the dissolution of parliament and the Supreme Judicial Council, declaring legislation by presidential decrees, and scheduling early parliamentary elections for December 2022.

Tunisia’s main political forces have regarded these measures as a “coup against the constitution,” while others view them as a “correction of the course of the 2011 revolution.”  Saied maintains that his measures were taken in accord with the constitution to protect the state from imminent danger.