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Tunisia judiciary considers request for the release of ‘conspiracy’ detainees

March 31, 2023 at 9:09 am

Hundreds of opposition supporters gather to protest against the rule of President Kais Saied and demanded the release of human right activists, journalists and political and juristic figures opposed to the president who have been arrested in recent weeks in Tunis, Tunisia on March 05, 2023. [Anadolu Agency]

The indictment department of the Tunis Court of Appeal will consider the defence team’s request to release the detainees in what is known as the “conspiracy against state security” file.

Lawyer Samir Dilou said that a decision would be issued either to accept the request to release the accused or to reject it, but he downplayed the likelihood of a positive response and their release.

The defence team had submitted requests for the release of the detainees more than a week ago, but all were rejected, prompting the appeal.

The “conspiracy” file led to the arrest of a number of officials including first-line leaders from the National Salvation Front including Jowhar Ben Mubarak, Shaima Issa and Radha Belhaj.

The Secretary-General of the Republican Party, Issam Chebbi, politicians Abdel Hamid Jelassi and Ghazi Chaouachi, activist Khiyam Al-Turki, businessman Kamal Al-Latif, and owner of a private radio station, Nour Al-Din Boutar, were also arrested.

Judge Ahmed Souab described the “conspiracy against state security” file as empty because it does not include recordings or seizures.

READ: US lawmakers ask Biden to condition aid to Tunisia on respecting democracy