Tunisian President Kais Saied Announces Launch of ‘National Dialogue’

President of Tunisia, Kais Saied has opened up on the establishment of a national dialogue, which exempts all political parties perceived to be responsible for the political and economic crisis destabilising the country.

The national dialogue, according to the president, is aimed at “building the new republic.”

Saied, who attended the Muslim Eid-ul-Fitr festival that marked the end of Ramadan on Sunday, said the national dialogue was long awaited, and a commission had been put in place to handle affairs, as has been repeatedly demanded by the European Union and the G7 countries since his assumption of full powers in office in 2021.

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He went ahead to reveal organisations that will be participating in the national dialogue: The Tunisian Trade Union UGTT, the Tunisian Union of Industry, Trade and Handicrafts (UTICA), the Tunisian League of Human Rights (LTDH) and the Tunisian Order of Lawyers.

Noureddine Taboubi, Leader of the Tunisian General Labour Union (UGTT) REUTERS/Angus McDowall

UGTT leader Noureddine Taboubi on Sunday, urged Saied to launch the national dialogue, as it might “probably be the last chance” to unify the country in order to avoid  “a dismantling of the state and a financial and economic collapse”.

Saied warned that organisations and parties that have opposed his rule and tried to sabotage his leadership will not be participating.

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Pundits say that the Islamist Ennahda Movement may not be invited to participate in the national dialogue, as its recent protest against Saied’s leadership style earned it a position on the wrong side of the presidency.

The former law professor, got elected in 2019 amidst outrage and controversy surrounding his emergence. Saied later moved to seize full power, and has since ruled by decree.

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