Tunisia In Turmoil After Assassination, Ruling Party Rejects Call For New Government
FRANCE 24 (France), AL JAZEERA (Qatar), REUTERS
Tunisia's ruling Islamic Ennahda party has rejected Prime Minister Hamdi Jebali's proposal to dissolve the government in a bid to restore calm after the killing of opposition leader Chokri Belaid in Tunis.
Hours after Wednesday morning's assassination, which sent protesters onto the streets across Tunisia, Jebali had announced that the country’s government was to be dissolved and an interim non-political cabinet formed. But on Thursday morning, Jebali’s own Ennahda party rejected his proposal, France 24 reports.
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"The assassination that puts Tunisia in danger," reads Le Monde"s cover
"The prime minister did not ask the opinion of his party," Abdelhamid Jelassi, Ennahda's vice-president, told Reuters. "We in Ennahda believe Tunisia needs a political government now. We will continue discussions with others parties about forming a coalition government," he added, distinguishing the solution with Jebali’s call for a cabinet of non-partisan technocrats.
Meanwhile Ennahda’s leader Rachid Ghannouchi has denied opposition claims that the party was behind Chokri Belaid’s killing. The senior leader of the Democratic Patriotic party, whose assassination sparked the most violent protests in Tunisia since the uprising began two years ago, was a prominent secular opponent of Tunisia's moderate Islamist-led government, according to Al Jazeera.