AA / Tunisia / Alaa Hammoudi
Tunisian President Kaïs Saïed declared on Monday that “freedom of movement is guaranteed to all Tunisians, and there is no intention to undermine it”, in view of the exceptional decisions, and that the ban on travel only concerns persons targeted by legal proceedings.
On July 25, the Tunisian president decided to dismiss the head of government Hichem Mechichi, assuming himself the executive authority with the help of a government of which he will appoint the head. He also froze the powers of parliament for a period of 30 days, lifted the immunity of deputies, and took the head of the prosecution, before issuing presidential orders to remove officials and appoint others.
Saïed went on Monday to Tunis-Carthage international airport, where he “inspected the progress of activities in the various areas, took cognizance of the conditions for completing travel procedures and listened to the observations and suggestions of ‘a number of citizens,’ according to a video released by the Presidency of the Republic on its Facebook page.
President Saïed affirmed on this occasion that “freedom of movement is guaranteed to all Tunisians and that there is no intention to undermine it.”
He added: “The exceptional measures are precautionary measures, which do not in any way imply depriving Tunisians of their right to movement, and some politicians should wait and understand the reason for adopting these measures.”
Saïed’s decisions created a strong political divide in Tunisia. The majority of parties rejected them, and some saw them as a “coup against the Constitution”, while others supported them, seeing them as a “turnaround” imposed by the political, economic crises. and health (coronavirus pandemic).
“People wanted by justice, who are suspected of corruption, or who must regularize their situation in court, are the only ones affected by the travel ban,” added the Tunisian president.
On August 9, Mohsen Dali, spokesperson for the economic and financial judiciary in Tunisia, announced that a judge had decided to ban 12 officials, including a former minister and a deputy, from travel on suspicion of corruption involving on the transport and extraction of phosphate.
Saïed added: “We will not hesitate to assert Tunisia’s rights and to recover the money looted and hidden abroad by those who claim to be businessmen.”
The Tunisian president again denied that the July 25 proceedings were a coup, and said that “the coming period will see the formation of a government to keep things running smoothly, according to the expression of the will of the Tunisian people. “
* Translated from Arabic by Mourad Belhaj
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