Tunisian President to present reforms plan amid pressure
President Kais Saied of Tunisia announced on Thursday he was working hard to come up with a time frame for reforms to defuse increasing criticism locally and internationally after he dismissed the cabinet, suspended parliament and took over executive powers four months ago.
But Saied did not specify when he expected to present amid mounting pressure for a road-map to end a state of emergency and return to parliamentary democracy.
"We are working day and night to set a timetable for reforming the political system in a way that responds to the demands of Tunisians,” Saied said during a meeting with his appointed government.
Saied took over nearly all powers in July in a move he said is according to the country's constitution but critics claimed is a coup, a decade after the Islamic Awakening that led to the ousting of longtime president Zine El Abidine Ben Ali in January 2011.
Tunisia is viewed as the only country that succeeded in carrying out a democratic transition after the popular awakening also famously known as the Arab Spring.
Last week, thousands of Tunisians protested near parliament in the capital, demanding he reinstate the assembly. Supporters of President Saied have also held rallies across the country to back his political decisions.
Saied has defended his takeover as the only way to end governmental paralysis after years of political squabbling and economic stagnation, and he has promised to uphold rights and freedoms won in the 2011 revolution.