Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

AFRICA NEWS

Rwandan singer amongst terror plot suspects

Read more

DEBATE

What's Putin's Plan? Kiev Accuses Russia of Terrorism

Read more

FOCUS

Campaigning against Bouteflika's re-election... in France

Read more

WEB NEWS

Chile: Online mobilization to help Valparaiso fire victims

Read more

ENCORE!

Art, sex, money, memory and manga

Read more

MIDDLE EAST MATTERS

Spat over Iran's UN ambassador hampers thawing relations with US

Read more

FOCUS

China trade deal: Is Taiwan's identity under threat?

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

'Call it a caretaker government'

Read more

DEBATE

Nigeria's Battles

Read more

  • Frantic search for South Korea ferry passengers continues

    Read more

  • Kiev powerless as pro-Russia activists seize armoured vehicles

    Read more

  • Algeria heads to the polls: ‘this election has nothing to do with us’

    Read more

  • Scandal-hit French doctor Jacques Servier dies

    Read more

  • N. Korea not amused by London hair salon's Kim Jong-un ad

    Read more

  • US rolls out red carpet for French critic of capitalism

    Read more

  • Real Madrid beat old foes Barcelona to lift Copa del Rey

    Read more

  • Belgian head of wildlife reserve shot in eastern Congo

    Read more

  • France's new PM targets welfare in drive to cut spending

    Read more

  • Campaigning against Bouteflika's re-election... in France

    Read more

  • Brazil club Mineiro cancel Anelka signing after no-show

    Read more

  • Syria 'torture' photos silence UN Security Council members

    Read more

  • Paris laboratory loses deadly SARS virus samples

    Read more

  • More than 100 schoolgirls kidnapped in northeast Nigeria

    Read more

  • New York police disband unit targeting Muslims

    Read more

  • 'Miracle girl' healthy after seven-organ transplant in Paris

    Read more

  • Paris police memo calling for Roma eviction ‘rectified’

    Read more

  • Burgundy digs into France's bureaucratic 'mille-feuille'

    Read more

  • French court drops ‘hate speech’ case against Bob Dylan

    Read more

  • Algeria rights crackdown slammed ahead of election

    Read more

  • Iraq closes notorious Abu Ghraib jail over security fears

    Read more

  • In ‘Tom at the Farm’, Xavier Dolan blends Hitchcock and homoeroticism

    Read more

Africa

Ben Ali fires government, calls early elections

©

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2011-01-14

Tunisia's President Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali has dissolved the country's government and called for early parliamentary elections to be held within the next six months. The move follows weeks of deadly protests across the country.

AFP - Tunisian President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali sacked the government and called early elections in six months, the prime minister announced Friday as weeks of deadly unrest mounted with new clashes.

Prime Minister Mohammed Ghannouchi, quoted by the official TAP news agency, said Ben Ali had decided "to dismiss the government and call early elections in six months".

The prime minister said he had been tasked with forming a new government.

He said the dismissal of the government was part of a host of measures decided by Ben Ali to calm the mounting unrest. The president also announced late Thursday that he would not seek another term after 2014.

Despite his concessions, thousands of demonstrators across Tunisia demanded Friday that Ben Ali step down immediately, with police firing volleys of tear gas to break up a huge rally in the centre of the capital.

Tunisian Foreign Minister Kamel Morjane said meanwhile that a national unity government would be feasible and "totally normal" for the country.

Speaking on French radio station Europe 1 Friday, Morjane made a significant nod towards Mohammed Nejib Chebbi, leader of the opposition Progressive Democratic Party, which is legal but not represented in parliament.

"Given the conduct of people like Mr. Nejib Chebbi, I think it is feasible, even totally normal" to have a power-sharing deal, Morjane said. He gave no further details of who he thought might take part.

A Paris-based rights group has said the weeks of unrest have left 66 people dead since mid-December, with security forces opening fire on protesters. The toll is about three times higher than one issued by the government.

Ben Ali's televised address on Thursday evening was well received by rival political groups in Tunisia, where he has held power for 23 years and the organised opposition is weak.

He also pledged to liberalise the political system and ordered security forces not to fire on crowds of protesters.

Date created : 2011-01-14

Comments

COMMENT(S)