Police fires teargas at protesters in Tunisia

Posted By: Rama Mohan
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Tunis, Jan 24: Tunis police on Monday, Jan 24, fired Teargas at peaceful protesters who were demanding removal of government ministers connected to ousted president Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali.

The protests followed as the north African country's prime minister Mohamed Bhannouchi defended his decision to take back several familian faces into the new cabinet from the ousted president's government. He insisted the necessity of ministers from the "old guard."

Carrying banners denouncing inclusion of RCD party in the new government, about 200 leftwing opposition party supporters and unionists gathered in Avenue Bourguiba.

The protesters called the new government a shame. It's an insult to the revolution that claimed lives and blood, the protesters said.

Soon after the protesters gathered Tunisian police used batons to disperse them and then fired teargas. May protester fled into side streets as helicopters circled. However, the protesters regrouped to sing the national anthem, but again they were teargased by the police.

The new government has taken three opposition leaders along with several others from the former president Ben Ali's government.

Foreign Minister, Kamel Morjane said the unity government would exercise power for a short time, and would strive to solve problems like corruption and unemployment, for which the protesters were fighting.

He said that the unity government is a transitional one and its goal is clear and its duration is specified legally with the agreement of all parties.

"It may be possible that the next government will not have any member of the former overnment," he added. However, the protesters inisited that they don't want any RCD ninisters in the new government.

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