Wednesday, January 26, 2011

The Tunisian government is trying to ensure its survival

An international arrest warrant was issued against former President Ben Ali and his wife and Interpol issued a global alert to locate and arrest the couple.
Reassuring, communicate, defuse the crisis ... While Wednesday's announcement of the composition of the new government was always expected, the interim cabinet Tunisian redoubled efforts to try to regain the confidence of the street. Symbolic gesture, an international arrest warrant has been issued against former President Ben Ali and his wife, Leila Trabelsi. Sweeping the popular fear of seeing the former dictator unpunished, the Justice Minister said that the couple was charged with "illegal acquisition of movable and immovable property" and "illicit transfer of currency abroad. Six members of the presidential guard which the redoubtable former presidential security chief, Gen. Ali Seriate, were also charged with extortion against the people and security forces.
The night before, the government - weakened from its inception on January 17, by the defection of several ministers - had already left the ballast by announcing a series of social measures, including granting a monthly allowance of 150 dinars (78 Euros) for young unemployed graduates accepting a job half-time in utilities and financial assistance to families of victims of recent events. Major changes are also planned in the embassies and governorates to stop the appointments allegiance.
Life takes its course
According to information received, in dribs and drabs, consultations in progress, the reshuffle should consist of replacement of five ministers resigned and a departure of some ministers of the former team Ben Ali in key positions (including those of Foreign Affairs, Interior and Defense).
But these signs of abating be enough to calm the protesters? Gathered for the fourth straight day outside the office of Prime Minister Mohammed Ghannouchi, thousands of protesters continued to decline on Wednesday, any form of compromise. "For me, you do not will get rid of the dictatorship as Ghannouchi and the RCD ministers are in place!" Carried away Laayoun Mohammed, an unemployed 50. Leaning against a wall in the main square of the Casbah, the administrative district of Tunis, it has just begun a hunger strike that he plans to continue until "the government falls for good." Thousands of protesters also took to the streets in Sfax, the second largest city, located 270 km south of Tunis, in response to a general strike launched by the UGTT (General Union of Tunisian Workers).
This powerful trade union federation had also encouraged the Tunisians continue on Thursday this initiative throughout the country, even before knowing the details of the reshuffle. Its demands are clear: the dissolution of the government and its reconstitution in consultation with political parties, the components of civil society and regional and national figures. According to the Tunisian news agency TAP, applications, shared by several organizations including the National Order of Lawyers, were notified on Wednesday, the President of the Republic acting.
Reduction curfew
At the margin of this tight tussle between the interim cabinet and his opponents, life resumed its course. In downtown, traffic is in full swing again on Avenue Habib Bourguiba, where sidewalk cafes and restaurants are crowded. At Monoprix Street Central Park, Wiem Nasser said she came to his first race since January 14, the date of the fall of Ben Ali. "One learns by degrees to live," says the post office employee for 24 years. By late afternoon, text messages were also beginning to flood the phones to peddle the new relief of curfew postponed 20 hours to 22 hours. As for the three new committees that need floor on institutional reform, corruption under Ben Ali and repression in recent weeks they have taken possession of their offices on Wednesday and are already currently working on their files. "I hope everybody will manage to agree on a minimum for the transitional government could finally work normally, like everyone else!" Says Nasser Wiem.

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