Monthly Archives: June 2014

Abd Aljalil Albedoui, the General coordinator of the Tunisian Labour Party, gives feedback on Tunisia’s current state.

The Situation in the country is characterized by the existence of many problems that give rise to fear and predict continued instability.

The government has not yet shown indicators of the existence of a consistent will to prosecute those who were involved in tyranny and corruption. Compared to the Egyptian government’s reaction towards the symbols of the Mubarak regime, the Tunisian government seems to be reluctant. As a result, the situation has caused a lack of confidence between citizens and existing institutions.

Furthermore, violent episodes witnessed lately in Metlaoui are signs of those who a dreaming to seethe return of a tyranny. These groups stand in many cases behind the movements aimed at  demanding the impossible, more than aiming to achieve the demands of legitimacy.

In all cases, do not forget that we are in a delicate stage characterized by a transition from a state of suppression of freedoms,  absence of dialogue , and weakness of political culture,which would complicate the process of democratic transition and make it risky.

But in such circumstances, the elite should fully assume its political, social and cultural to build a better Tunisia for tomorrow.

 

Written by Miriam Ben Ghazi

A press conference was held in Africa Hotel on June 8th by the Emrhod Consulting Institute to shed light on the results of the latest survey conducted by the institute about the election of the constituent assembly. 1000 persons were questioned about “Political Parties and the Democratic Transition”. The survey showed that 51% of Tunisians have no idea about which party they would vote for, while the rest were divided as follows: Al-Nahdha came first with 45.8%, PDP (Progressive Democratic Party) came second with 20.3%, POCT, in the third place with 12.5%, Al-Tajdid Movement was fourth with 11.1%, and CPR (Congress For the Republic) came in fifth place with 7.3%. Some new parties have started to assert their presence. For instance, the Party for Justice and Equality got 4.5%, followed by , the Socialist Left Party with 3.2%, MPUP with 3.1%, the Direct Democracy Party with 2.9%, and Al-Majd got 2.2%

Emrhod Consulting Institute described the results of the survey as natural considering the lack of communication between people and the majority of parties

As for the delay of the election day, 66% were for maintaining the date of July 24th and 28% were not, the remaining 6% were neutral.

Giving all the circumstances one can expect that the majority of people will not vote for any party but the survey showed that 85% are willing to vote.

The huge concern that remains irritating for Tunisians, is whether or not any political personality would be able to lead the country in such a crucial situation.

Written by Ibrahim Ben Slama

According to TAP, the check point of Ras Jdir witnessed, on Wednesday June 8th, a high number of foreign arrivals, especially Libyans. This is the result of continuous military operations in various parts of the western areas in the capital Tripoli. The number of refugees is estimated to exceed 6 thousand. It is also worth mentioning that about 200 families crossed the border. They used the Saharan paths to enter Tunisia through the desert, escaping the worsening security situation in Libya. Moreover, the port of “Al Ktif” (in the region of Ben Guerdene) received a boat from Libya carrying at least 18 people. They are civilians and military personnel, including high-ranking officers in the army, lately seceded from the Qaddafi regime.

This flow of people has put a lot of pressure on the region. “La Presse” reports shortages in fuel in Ben Guerdene. The newspaper quoted a worker at a gas station who said “The number of customers in our gas station did not exceed ten per day, currently it reaches thousands”.

Jeune Afrique discusses the impact of the wealthy Libyans who took refuge in Tunisia. According to the magazine there are thousands of them living in hotels and renting houses in the island of Djerba, one of the most attractive regions for tourists. In a way this is a blast for the residents since 80% of them rely on tourism to earn their living. This has benefited the tourism sector, especially that the number of tourists has dramatically decreased.

Assahafa [Daily Gouvernemental] asks: Is the government able to meet 700.000 job request?

Yesterday morning was held at the Ministry of Vocational Training and Employment, a meeting to shed the light on the emergency to launch a program to face the upcoming challenges of unemployment.

Mr. Sami Ghorbal [Ministry of Vocational Training and Employment representative], a program implemented since the month of April targeted to revise the employment policy. Accordingly, the number of unemployed exceeds 520.000 translated into an unemployment national average of 14%.

He stressed that this situation has deteriorated recently mainly because of the return of many workers from Libya obliged to flee because of the unrest. Indeed, the number of returning workers recorded 32.000 by the late April 2011. In addition, many companies were destabilized during the Revolution, either by acts of looting and burning, or by sit-ins and strikes, which nevertheless caused a loss of 10.000 workers.

 

Violence all over the region of Metlaoui created huge concern among all Tunisian. A riot started today came as a reaction against these violent acts and a support for the baccalaureate students of the region as well.

Abd Elhamid Smida, a participant in the riot said: violence is not tolerable and tribalism never been an issue for the region it is just a cover up plan. According to workers in the company of phosphate Gafsa the mining sector is losing 9 million dollars or maybe more every day for three months and that the right is a way to push the government into intervention.

About the convoy supporting the baccalaureate students, a participant said: it is an attempt to bring the people living in this region together and establish censuses. The convoy came as a support for the baccalaureate students as they start their first exam today as special baccalaureate session start, the first after the revolution so all efforts are put together for this session to succeed.

 

According to Mr. Riyadh Sidaoui [a Tunisian expert and the founder of The Arabic  Center Of Research And Distribution], the poor working class, the graduated youth and the middle class, in addition to  business men have mostly contributed to the revolution since the Tunisian economy has moved from capitalism to illegitimate monopoly and unfair competition .The Tunisian revolution was not based on any ideology ,it is not a communist Bolshevist  revolution, neither an Iranian Islamist or an Arabic Sectarian one. All Tunisian social categories have agreed on the removal of Ben Ali .

As far as the Tunisian military is concerned, it is worth mentioning that this later has contributed a lot to the success of the revolution, on the contrary to the Libyan one, the Tunisian military has supported the people and has never contributed in any financial or political corrupt acts during Ben Ali regime.

Many obstacles are faced by the Arabic countries today as far as democracy is concerned ,indeed , cultural beliefs  are still based on the authoritarian paternal male society, as well as  ,political culture should be more taught and developed in Arab states  .one should recognize that the achievement of democracy in the Arab world is usually followed by extreme violence .

Mr Riyadh Sidaoui added that the presence of The Islamist party [Ennahdha] on the political scene is praised by the US government as a liberal movement that does not call for communist causes, this Islamist Party is moreover directly and indirectly financed by the Gulf states and it is known by its well-organised capacities as based on a military procedure consisting of obedience and loyalty to the leader or Imam.

Finally, in the context of Tunisian economy, it is widely known that it is namely based on tourism and services; however, the touristic sector nowadays is facing harsh times especially with the withdrawal of foreign investments in the current situation of chaos and instability.

 

“Assahafa” (p.4) (throughout TAP) covered the decrease of the curfew in Metlaoui. The curfew is now from 6pm to 5am. A high representative of the army in the region said that the security has improved in the region. The curfew applies to the residents of Metloui, except nightly workers and emergency cases. The newspaper reminds that this measure has been taken after the violent confrontations that cause about 12 victims and 150 injured people.

“Assahaf” (p.3) interviewed 22 parties about their positions of the announcement of the temporary prime minister Mr. Beji Caied Essebsi. Out of all these parties only one refuses the choice of the date. Indeed, the Party of Justice and Development (Parti de la Justice et du Développement) finds this date too late and denounces the exclusion of the party in the negotiation.

In “Assabeh” (p.6), Mr. Moncef Marzouki [the president of the Congress for the Republic (Congrès pour la république)] expresses “the big disappointment” of the decision of the prime minister. He was expecting to make the date of October 16 closer rather than postponing it.

“La Presse” (p.4) covered the reactions of Ennahdha and the Progressive Democratic Party (Parti démocrate progressiste), the two parties that strongly opposed the proposal of the Independent High Authority for the Elections to delay the elections to October 16. The two parties are now in favour of the new date (October 23) because it was a real consensus after negotiations with Mr. Essebsi. Mr. Mouldi Sahem [executive member of the Progressive Democratic Party] conveys that his party had proposed the same date.

 

  • Assahafa ??????? (The Press), Daily independent
  • Beji Caid Essebsi [interim PM]: October 23rd the elections’ date and Tunisia will succeed in establishing a democratic system.
  • Parties interact with the new date for elections.
  • As a response to Metlaoui events: A protest in Tunisia to denounce acts of violence.
  • Riadh Sidaoui [Director of the Centre the Arab world for research and publishing in Geneva]: Social movements are pushing Tunisia and Egypt to a “radical revolution”.
  • Assabah ?????? (The Morning), Daily independent
  • 5 political messages and 3 red lines in Kaid Cebsi’s speech.
  • Today start Baccalaureate exams.
  • Al Chourouk ??????, (The Sunrise) Daily independent
  • Tayeb Baccouch [Minister of education] on the Baccalaureate exams: The success of the National Test is part of the success of People’s Revolution.
  • Confiscation of 2000 bullets, 10 Kg of lead and 15 rifles in Metlaoui.
  • UAE central bank asked to freeze accounts of Ben Ali and his wife.
  • La Presse, Daily Governmental
  • Election of the Constituent Assembly: D -137
  • Because of the improved security situation in Métlaoui Curfew eased
  • Political parties adhere mostly to the October 23
  • The National Commission on Corruption: An additional list of 45 people to investigate.

Written by Ibrahim Ben Slama

On June,7 ousted president Zeine-El-ABeidine Ben Ali broke the silence through the statemnts of his French lawyer, Jean-Yves Leborgne. Leborgne said on behalf of Ben Ali that the corruption charges represent a “masquerade”, and that the former president does not own assets outside the country. One day later, the Ministry of Justice replied to these statements.
During the 6th periodical conference held on Tuesday, June 7, by representatives of the Ministry of Justice, the ministry expressed its surprise at the statements of Mr. Jean-Yves Leborgne. Kadhem Zine El Abidine, the spokesperson of the Ministry, added that lawyers are free to choose the methods to defend their clients and that “we are particularly surprised by these statements, especially that we have no evidence that this lawyer, or anyone else, has asked to read the file of the two lawsuits filed against the deposed president”.

It is worth reminding that Mr. Kadhem Zine El Abidine mentioned that the judge relied on a set of clues to address the charges against the ousted President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali. These clues include the seizure of firearms and, drugs at the palace of Carthage, as well as jewelry and, foreign currency at the palace of Sidi Dhrif.

He also recalled that according to Tunisian law, a foreign lawyer can not defend someone who has Tunisian nationality. In addition, the bilateral agreement signed between Tunisia and France, in 1979, provides that a French lawyer can defend a Tunisian person only if he obtains the prior permission from the Tunisian Ministry of Justice and must be accompanied by a Tunisian lawyer. He continued by stressing that a foreign lawyer may defend a Tunisian if the client is present at the trial, which is not the case here, since the deposed president fled the country to Saudi Arabia.

source: TAP