Tunisia minister fired, protesters freed: Prime Minister
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Last Updated: Wednesday, January 12, 2011, 21:11
Tunisia: Tunisia sacked its interior minister and released those arrested in protests over unemployment that have rocked the country since mid-December, the prime minister said on Wednesday.

Prime Minister Mohamed Ghannouchi told a press conference that interior minister Rafik Belhaj Kacem had been dismissed.

Kacem was responsible for the police force, which has been widely criticised for its ruthless response to the protests. The government said 21 people had been killed in the unrest, but labour unions and rights groups said more than 50 were killed over the weekend.

The prime minister gave no figure for the number of people arrested during the protests but said all had been released.

Ghannouchi also said allegations by opposition and non-government groups into corruption would be investigated by a special commission.

Deadly protests over unemployment escalated at the weekend, with security forces opening fire on demonstrators.


First Published: Wednesday, January 12, 2011, 21:11

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