Tunisian Parliament to Continue Work Remotely Despite Suspension by President, Lawmaker Says
14:33 GMT 26.07.2021 (Updated: 14:35 GMT 26.07.2021)
© REUTERS / ZOUBEIR SOUISSIPolice officers keep guard as supporters of Tunisia's biggest political party, the moderate Islamist Ennahda, gather outside the parliament building in Tunis, Tunisia July 26, 2021.
© REUTERS / ZOUBEIR SOUISSI
CAIRO (Sputnik) - The Tunisian parliament, suspended by President Kais Saied amid mass anti-government protests, will continue to work remotely, lawmaker Maher Madhioub from the moderate Islamist Ennahdha said on Monday.
Earlier in the day, the parliament's leadership gathered outside the legislature's building to hold an extraordinary meeting, chaired by Speaker Rached Ghannouchi. Most deputies were able to participate in the meeting online.
"The decisions announced by the president were discussed [at the meeting]. Parliament leaders expressed their complete rejection and strong condemnation of these decisions, amounting to a serious violation of the constitution," Madhioub said.
Tunisian legislative leaders urged the army and security forces to comply with the constitution and not hinder the parliament's work, he said.
26 July, 09:50 GMT
"The parliamentary leadership called on the Representatives to work for protecting the constitution and democratic changes in Tunisia, as well as continue to carry out their constitutional duties as if nothing had happened," Madhioub said, adding that "the parliament's activities will be conducted online for now."
Mass anti-government protests took place in Tunis on Sunday. By the end of the day, Saied suspended the parliament for 30 days and froze the legal immunity of lawmakers. He also dismissed Prime Minister Hichem Mechichi, a member of the Ennahdha party. Saied said he would now assume executive power alongside a new prime minister, who is still to be appointed.
Violent protests reportedly continue in front of the Tunisian parliament building, which was shut down by pro-president security forces. Clashes occurred on Monday between Saied's supporters and opponents, who accuse him of carrying out a coup.