April 1, 2023

Rached Ghannouchi, speaker of dissolved parliament, informed to seem at police station after arrests of president’s critics.

Tunisian police have summoned the top of the most important opposition occasion for questioning after a string of arrests Focusing on critics of President Kais Saied has raised issues over free speech and political rights.

Rached Ghannouchi, head of the Ennahdha occasion and speaker of an elected parliament that Saied formally dissolved Final 12 months, has been requested to current himself at a Tunis police station on Tuesday, Ennahdha spokesperson Zayneb Brahmi stated.

Police haven’t revealed the aim of the investigation, Reuters quoted Brahmi as saying at a information briefing. There was no speedy remark by the Ministry of the Inside.

Ghannouchi was questioned a number of occasions final 12 months on suspicion of illicit funding for Ennahdha and serving to ship Tunisian fighters to Syria to help ISIL (ISIS) fighters. The occasion has denied the allegations towards Ghannouchi, and judges determined to not maintain him in detention pending investigation.

Ennahdha, the most important occasion in parliament earlier than its dissolution, has performed a number one position in successive coalition governments since Tunisia’s 2011 revolutionwhich led to democratic rule.

After profitable the 2019 presidential election, Saied seized most powers in 2021, shutting down parliament and transferring to rule by decree earlier than rewriting the structure. His critics, together with Ennahdha, have denounced his actions as an anti-democratic coup.

The president says his actions are authorized and essential to avoid wasting Tunisia from chaos and has described his foes as traitors, blaming them for the nation’s financial and political woes.

Ongoing arrests

This month police arrested a number of main figures vital of Stated. The coordinated arrests have raised fears of a wider crackdown on dissent and prompted the UN Human Rights Workplace to name for the detainees’ speedy launch.

Abdelhamid Jelassi, a former politician from Ennahdha, was detained on the night time of February 11. Jelassi’s spouse, Mounia Brahim, informed Al Jazeera the lads confirmed neither police IDs nor a warrant, even when requested for them.

That very same night time, Khayam al-Turki, a member of the centre-left Ettakatol (Democratic Discussion board for Labor and Liberties) occasion, was taken from his home after midnight and is at present detained underneath terrorism legal guidelines from 2015.

On February 13, police raided the house of Noureddine Bhiri, a senior Ennahdha official, in addition to that of political activist and lawyer Lazhar Akremi.

The fees towards these detained haven’t been made public, however Saied stated final week that a few of these arrested have been “criminals who have been plotting towards state safety”.

In the meantime, 1000’s of union members held protests throughout the nation on Saturday and Sunday to denounce worsening financial woes and the arrest of a high union official, Anis Kaabi.

Kaabi was arrested on January 31 after a strike by toll barrier employees, in what the union has described as “a blow to union work and a violation of union rights”.

The highly effective UGTT labor union has turn out to be more and more vocal in opposing Saied and stated on Monday that it might carry ahead a protest in Tunis by one week to March 4.

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