MOSCOW, July 27 (RIA Novosti) - Tunisian opposition leader Mohamed Brahmi was killed on Thursday from the same gun that was used half a year ago to assassinate his coalition party leader Chokri Belaid, Al Jazeera reported citing the country’s interior minister.
Brahmi, an opposition lawmaker, was shot in the head 11 times by unknown assailants on a motorcycle outside his house in Ariana on Thursday.
“The same 9mm automatic weapon that killed Belaid also killed Brahmi,” Interior Minister Lotfi Ben Jeddou said adding that the finding came as a result of a ballistic examination.
Belaid, a fierce opponent of Tunisia's ruling Islamists, was gunned down outside his home in early February.
Brahmi’s assassination sparked mass protests across the country. Thousands took to the streets on Thursday afternoon and clashed with police outside the interior ministry’s headquarters when the news was made public.
Police fired teargas when protestors attempted to set up tents for a sit-in. Tear gas was also used to disperse protesters in the country’s second largest city of Sfax.
All international flights to and from Tunisia have been cancelled over a general strike announced by the country’s largest labor organization UGTT, the civil aviation authority said.
Brahmi’s sister Souhiba accused the main Tunisian Islamist party, Ennahda, of being behind the killing, Al-Jazeera said. Ennahda strongly denied the accusations.