Sunday, 23 January 2011

Tunisians demanding interim PM to quit - New wave of violent protests erupts


As unrest spreads across volatile Tunisia, protestors are mounting pressure on the country's hypocrite Prime Minister Mohamed Ghannouchi and his cabinet to quit. Thousands held demonstrations in Tunis, the capital city of Tunisia, as well as other cities and protested against the presence of Ghannouchi and other allies to ousted President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali in the new government. Country's main trade union also called for a new administration and organized a protest march dubbed the Caravan of Liberation which set off from central Tunisia for the capital on Saturday. Tunisia's interim prime minister, however, has pledged to leave office after elections, which is expected to be held in the next six months, but he has given no indication of when the vote will be held.

Policemen take part in a demonstration on the streets of Tunis, on January 22, 2011

"We want to make the next elections the first transparent and legitimate elections since independence", Ghannouchi addressed the nation on Friday on state-run Tunis TV. "After this transitional period -- with all honesty -- I will leave any political role I have even if I was selected or appointed. I will leave political life and retire", he said. Police officers who previously defended the Ben Ali regime have also joined the protests. The ongoing unrest in Tunisia, which led to the ouster of president Ben Ali, seems to be spreading to other North african countries. On Tuesday an Egyptian man lost his life after he set himself on fire on the roof of his house in protest at the dire living conditions and joblessness in the country.

Two other Egyptian men that were inspired by events in Tunisia attempted to set themselves on fire in downtown Cairo too. Earlier on Saturday, hundreds of Egyptians gathered outside the Tunisian Embassy in Cairo to show their solidarity with Tunisians and called for protests similar to those in Tunisia. Self-immolation attempts have spread across North African countries after an attempt by an unemployed Tunisian man to set himself on fire sparked an uprising that ended the 23-year rule of Ben Ali.

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