Tunisian president names considered one of his staunchest supporters as inside minister

TUNIS: Tunisian President Kais Saied named Kamal Feki, the previous governor of Tunis, as his new inside minister on Friday, simply hours after Taoufik Charfeddine resigned from the put up, amid a crackdown of distinguished opposition figures that has prompted worldwide ire.
Tunisian inside minister Taoufik Charfeddine, a detailed aide of President Kais Saied, introduced Friday he had resigned to spend extra time together with his three kids following the demise of his spouse final 12 months.
Charfeddine, 54, who had held his put up since October 2021, instructed reporters he wished to thank the president for “his understanding and for permitting me to be relieved of my duties.”
“The time has come for me to dedicate myself to this accountability she left me,” he mentioned.
Changing Charfeddine as inside minister is Kamal Feki, governor of Tunis since 2021 and likewise a part of Saied’s internal circle.
A former lawyer, Charfeddine was a key determine within the election marketing campaign that propelled the beforehand little-known Saied to the presidency in 2019.
After Saied froze parliament and sacked the then-government in a dramatic July 2021 transfer in opposition to the only democracy to emerge from the Arab Spring uprisings, Charfeddine turned a detailed adviser.
Because the president pushed by way of sweeping adjustments to the nation’s political system, concentrating near-total energy in his workplace, Charfeddine was one of the vital outspoken defenders of Saied’s energy seize.
Saied’s workplace recurrently launched video footage of the 2 males’s conferences within the presidential palace.
In the course of the wave of arrests that accompanied Saied’s energy seize, Charfeddine held information conferences to defend the incarceration of opposition politicians.
When the vp of the Islamist-inspired Ennahdha occasion, the most important in parliament earlier than its dissolution by Saied, went on starvation strike to protest his detention, Charfeddine alleged that terrorism fears had compelled the safety forces to reply.
“There have been fears of acts of terrorism concentrating on the nation’s safety and we needed to act,” the minister mentioned final 12 months of the arrest of Noureddine Bhiri, a former justice minister.
Final month, Charfeddine was by Saied’s aspect as Tunisia confronted a world outcry over a tirade by the president in opposition to unlawful migrants from sub-Saharan Africa.
“There isn’t a query of permitting anybody in an unlawful state of affairs to remain in Tunisia,” the president mentioned in considered one of his videotaped conferences with the minister.
“I cannot enable the establishments of the state to be undermined or the demographic composition of Tunisia to be modified.”
The president’s speech two nights beforehand had triggered a wave of violence in opposition to African migrants and prompted a number of West African international locations to prepare repatriation flights for fearful nationals.
On March 8, greater than 30 Tunisian non-governmental organizations demanded an apology from Charfeddine after he branded as “traitors” the president’s many critics within the non-public sector, the media and commerce unions.
They accused him of utilizing the “language of risk and intimidation” to “sow division” amongst Tunisians as a part of a “harmful populist discourse that foreshadows a police state” just like the one overthrown within the nation’s 2011 rebellion.


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