TUNIS (Reuters) – The Tunisian president said on Tuesday he would launch a “national dialogue” on changing the electoral law and the political system, but gave no details on how he would allay international concerns over his election. almost total seizure of power.
President Kais Saied assumed executive power in July, then rejected most of the constitution last month. Critics have called the measures a coup, and the European Union this week joined other donors in calling for a restoration of democratic order.
In a speech posted on the presidential Facebook page, Saied said the dialogue would include the country’s youth, but kept a provocative tone.
He said the talks would not include “those who stole people’s money and traitors”. He also criticized what he called foreign interference, telling world powers to “return contraband Tunisian money to European and international banks”.
Critics say his moves cast doubt on the democratic gains of the 2011 Tunisian revolution. But his supporters have welcomed the changes, saying they have taken the revolution from a corrupt and entrenched elite.
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Saied announced a new government this month but gave no indication that he was ready to relinquish control. Under the rules announced in September, the new cabinet ultimately reports to him rather than to the new prime minister, Najla Bouden.
(Reporting by Tarek Amara; Editing by Andrew Heavens)
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