Tunisia-Marzouki : a bitter aftertaste of a consensual election

The election of Monced Marzouki to the presidency of the Tunisian Republic comes like a revenge of this strong human rights defender and fierce opponent to the regime of the fallen president Ben Ali. In itself, the election was not a surprise. The victorious troika of the elections agreed to share the three key positions of the after-revolution period: the government presidency, the Constituent Nation Assembly, in charge of preparing the new constitution of the country, and the presidency of the Republic. These positions were given successively to the Islamist party Ennahda, the Ettakatol (social-democratic) party and the Congress for the Republic (CPR), the nationalist left party founded in 2001 by Moncef Marzouki. It is in 1979 that Marzouki rejoined the Tunisian League for Human Rights (LTDH) which was just created. His militancy will take him, one decade after, at the head of the League. It is this unconditional commitment for the human rights cause which will bring him Ben Ali’s thwart. After some years, he decided to seek exile in France, tired by the persecution and harassment of the political police.

When the revolution of December 2010 inflamed Tunisia, it is all naturally as a victorious militant that he returned to his country, glorified with years of struggle against the regime of Ben Ali. Nevertheless, since he accepted his new position as president of the Republic, the former Human Rights militant is the target of critics from everywhere. He has been all the time accused of losing ground in favour of the Islamists in exchange of a simple honorary presidency and of remaining silent about the attacks against the liberty of expression and individual liberties in universities. Moncef Marzouki was thus reproached the worse of which we can accuse a former intransigent human rights militant: the compromise.


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