Asharq Al-awsat English Middle-east and International News and Opinion from Asharq Al-awsat Newspaper

Tunisian President Vows to End ‘Exceptional Phase’

Tunisian President Vows to End ‘Exceptional Phase’

Wednesday, 13 April, 2022 - 08:15
Tunisians participate in a demonstration to demand the restoration of the parliament (AP)

Tunisian President Kais Saied has pledged to end the country's "current exceptional phase."

Saied was speaking during his meeting with the European Parliament's Foreign Affairs Committee members at Carthage Palace.

On Monday, the delegation arrived in Tunis for consultations on the country's path towards political reforms and a return to institutional stability.

During the meeting, Saied reviewed the reasons for announcing the measures in July 2021, saying he is keen to end the exceptional period by implementing the announced steps, in reference to the roadmap.

He stressed that the national dialogue has already been launched and will be based on the results of the online consultation to complete the stages he has previously announced, in particular holding a referendum on Jul. 25 and parliamentary elections on Dec. 17.

"The legislative elections will be free, transparent, and fair and under the full supervision of the Independent High Authority for Elections," Saied said.

The Tunisian President also expressed his unconditional stance in protecting the unity of his country and the continuity of the functioning of state institutions.

The European delegation expressed its support for Tunisia in its reform path, stressing the need to respect the principles of participation, pluralism, and representation in the remaining stages of the roadmap.

The European delegation said it was willing to use its expertise to help Tunisia complete the elections under the best conditions.

Observers believe that the members of the European delegation will not announce their final positions on the situation in Tunisia.

They explained that the European officials will not wholly comprehend the political situation in Tunisia until meeting with representatives of political parties, especially those who reject the exceptional measures and civil society organizations that demand the return of constitutional institutions.

The delegation will discuss the European support for Tunisia in the "political reform process."

Earlier, Prime Minister Najla Boden discussed the elections and the constitutional referendum in Tunisia with the European delegation, stressing that participation is vital for the roadmap.

The meeting was attended by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Migration, and Tunisians Abroad, Othman Jerandi, and the European Union Ambassador to Tunisia, Marcus Cornaro.

The delegation had previously indicated that members of the European Parliament would seek to reaffirm the need for an inclusive political dialogue, respect for the rule of law, civil liberties, and human rights, as well as a political system based on democratic principles, especially the separation of powers guaranteed through institutional checks and balances.

Editor Picks