Civil organizations and bodies, including the International Federation for Human Rights and the World Organization Against Torture, as well as a number of activists and academics, criticized Tunisian President Kais Saied's dismissal of about sixty judges two days ago.

These organizations considered, in a statement, that "the unilateral and authoritarian approach to dismissing judges is a blow to the authority of the constitution, a continuation of the tyrannical approach and a dangerous trend towards dictatorship," according to the statement.

The statement denounced the exemption process, stressing that its main goal is to intimidate and intimidate judges, similar to what the Troika government did in Tunisia in 2012, as he described it.

The statement pointed out that the reform of the judiciary must be within the framework of the rule of law that protects the right to a fair trial without misleading or immunizing presidential orders from being challenged.

Tunisian judges condemned President Said's attempt to demolish the system of separation of powers and control over the judiciary (Reuters)

The statement also called on national figures, organizations and political parties to stand against what he described as the systematic campaign taken by the head of state to bring the judiciary to its knees, according to the statement.

Tunisian President Kais Saied - who is accused of monopolizing the authorities in the country - strengthened his judicial powers by amending a law regulating the Supreme Judicial Council, according to which he relieved 57 judges of their duties.

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On Wednesday evening, a list of 57 judges was issued in the Official Gazette on charges including “covering up terrorist cases”, “corruption”, “sexual harassment”, “loyalty to political parties” and “disrupting the course of cases”, and they will be prosecuted, on the What Said confirmed in a ministerial meeting.

Among the dismissed judges, a former spokesman for the judicial pole to combat terrorism, a former director general of customs, the former head of the Supreme Judicial Council, and other judges who were previously accused of rapprochement with influential political parties.

The decision also includes judges who were supervising the so-called "secret service" file related to the investigation into the political assassinations of two politicians in 2013.

Saeed amended the decree of the Interim Supreme Judicial Council to be able to make a decision, and last February dissolved the Supreme Judicial Council, the independent constitutional body that was established in 2016 and works to ensure the independence of the judiciary in the country.

It also amended the Elections and Referendum Law.


unconstitutional

On the other hand, the Tunisia Project movement said that the judges’ exemptions contradict the constitution and the law because they are immune from appeal.

The movement added in a statement published on its Facebook page that the judiciary, like other sectors, requires fundamental reforms.

The statement stressed that the aforementioned presidential decree and order contradict the elements of judicial independence and the elements of fair trials.

The statement considered that many of the exemptions, in addition to their conflict with the constitution and the law due to their immunity from appeal, are based on political suspicions.

The Secretary-General of the Tunisian General Labor Union, Noureddine Tabboubi, said that issuing a presidential decree to dismiss 57 judges at this time is not without intimidation and intimidation, as he put it.

At a labor gathering of transport sector unions in the Tunisian capital, Taboubi added that the Minister of Justice exerted pressure by interfering in several cases.

In turn, the Secretary-General of the opposition "Democratic Current" party, Ghazi al-Shawashi, considered in a press conference Thursday that the dismissal decision "settling accounts against judges."


Moncef Marzouki

For his part, the former Tunisian President Moncef Marzouki said that he is proud of the position of all the judges who rejected the instructions of those who described him as illegitimate, in reference to Kais Saied.

In a post he posted on his Facebook page, Al-Marzouki called for seizing the historic opportunity that will forgive the wire for all its mistakes and all its past sins, by taking all the legal and struggle measures they see fit.

He stressed the standing of those he described as free people with the judges for the independence of the judiciary and the building of a state of law and institutions "that are not subject to the whims of an arrogant ruler who is unaware of the time in which he lives."

And the National Salvation Front - a bloc of political parties and civil society organizations opposed to Saeed - considered in a statement Thursday that what the president had done was a "crude interference" in the judiciary.

She accused him of having given himself "the right to dismiss judges based on mere suspicion without the right to object before the criminal justice system pronounced its final opinion."


Rejecting American position

Washington accused Tunisian President Kais Saied of undermining the country's democratic institutions after he sacked dozens of judges, as part of a series of measures apparently aimed at strengthening one-man rule.

In a televised speech on Wednesday, Saeed accused Qadat of corruption and protecting terrorists.

The Tunisian president also changed the members of the Independent High Authority for Elections and said he would introduce a new constitution this month.

State Department spokesman Ned Price said the "purge" was part of a "worrying set of steps that undermine Tunisia's independent democratic institutions."

In a regular press conference, Price said that US officials informed their Tunisian counterparts of the importance of adhering to the rules of the democratic system.

"We continue to urge the Tunisian government to pursue a comprehensive and transparent reform process with input from civil society and diverse political voices to enhance the legitimacy of reform efforts," Price said.

On July 25, 2021, Saeed issued decisions monopolizing the authorities, as he suspended the work of Parliament, dismissed the government, and suspended parts of the 2014 constitution, which he had promised to amend, and since then he has exercised power by issuing decrees.

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