Rashid al-Ghannouchi, the leader of the En-nahda Movement and former Speaker of the Parliament in Tunisia, was arrested after his house was raided by the plainclothes poliçe on 17 April by for allegedly inciting civil war in one of his speeches. It was also reported that the offices of the En-nahda Movement were closed and its activities were terminated.
Ghannouchi's house was raided by about 100 policemen and lawyers who came to observe the search, were not allowed to accompany the search which lasted for two hours. Even his lawyers and family were not told where Ghannouchi was being held, and it was explained that he would not be allowed to meet with his lawyers for 48 hours, according to the anti-terror law. There are allegations that Ghannouchi's health has deteriorated and he has been hospitalized. According to media reports as of today, Ghannouchi was arrested at the end of the 48-hour detention period.
The 81-year-old Ghannouchi has been widely respected for his lifelong struggle against dictatorship and oppression, as well as for his courage and honesty in resisting the coup carried out by Qays Said.
Ghannouchi, who is one of the symbols of change in Tunisia and lived in exile for many years, was able to return to Tunisia after the end of the dictatorial order and the En-Nahda Movement led by Ghannouchi won the victory in the elections. After the election victory, a heavy slander and smear campaign was launched against Ghannouchi through the media and politics. Ghannouchi showed with every attitude that he was not pursuing political interests and ensured that his party was removed from power and did not hesitate to share the administration with all segments of Tunisia. After that, the En-Nahda Movement, which also supports the presidential process of current President Qays Said, has been placed on the target board by Said himself at this stage.
President Kays Said has decided to dissolve the government and close the assembly by illegally using his constitutional authority in 2021 and blocked the work of the assembly by having the army surround the assembly, seized the administration by making a de facto coup. Since then, the repression against the opposition in Tunisia has intensified, the work of political parties has been restricted, the right to organize has been abolished, and the will of the people has been blocked.
These coup-related practices that took place in Tunisia, the country where the fuse of the Arab Spring was ignited and which is thought to be an example, pose serious risks to social peace. It is an unacceptable setback that the Tunisian people have turned around and reached the same point in Tunisia after overthrowing a 24-year dictatorial order.
The fact that Ghannouchi, who stands out with his intellectual accumulation, compromise and sacrifices is treated as a criminal,detained at the Iftaree table despite all his hard work, the duties he has undertaken, and years of exile, and subjected to unfair treatment, is an example of disloyalty that should be condemned worldwide. We condemn!..
We condemn the decisions aimed at closing all bureaus and offices of the Nahda Movement and banning their activities; illegal practices against Ghannouchi, the Nahda Movement and other leaders; arbitrary detention in custody, and we invite all sensitive people and institutions around the world to make efforts against this illegality
FREEDOM FOR GHANNOUCHI!
FREEDOM FOR EN-NAHDA!