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Tunisia’s Presidential Candidates Are Racing Against Time to Convince Voters

Tunisia’s Presidential Candidates Are Racing Against Time to Convince Voters

Friday, 13 September, 2019 - 09:45
Supporters react after Tunisian Prime Minister Youssef Chahed submitted his candidacy for the presidential elections, in Tunis, Tunisia August 9, 2019. REUTERS/Zoubeir Souissi/File Photo

A day before the closing of the campaign for Tunisia’s presidential election on Sunday, candidates are rushing to intensify their meetings with citizens and racing against time to convince voters of the seriousness and effectiveness of their electoral programs.

However, these intensive election campaigns have seen many breaches, while the members of the Independent High Electoral Commission considered those as ordinary and not affecting the electoral battle.

Ten days after the election campaign began on September 2, the Election Commission recorded at least 1,000 violations.

The presidential elections in the countries of the Diaspora started on Friday and will continue for three days. The authorities have dedicated 392 polling stations to receive about 400,000 registered voters.

The Ministry of Interior announced the recruitment of security forces to ensure a smooth voting process on Sunday. It noted that it had adjusted working hours by adopting a 24-hour continuous work system, in addition to enhancing the presence of its security units in various governorates.

Twenty-six candidates are running for the elections, which are being held following the death of the country’s first democratically elected leader in July.

Among the candidates are Youssef Chahed, the 44-year-old outgoing prime minister, jailed media magnate Nabil Karoui, and Islamist Ennahda party’s Abdelfattah Mourou.

Karoui has started a hunger strike in prison demanding to be allowed to vote, his lawyer told Reuters on Thursday.

He is the owner of the Nesma TV channel and was detained three weeks ago on suspicion of tax evasion and money laundering.

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