Press release regarding Tunisian President Kais Saied's dissolution of parliament on the evening of Wednesday, 30 March 2022

Euro-Med Human Rights Monitor views with great concern the decision of Tunisian President Kais Saied to dissolve the country’s parliament, and sees it as a dangerous move that will further complicate a crisis that has been ongoing since the initial announcement of these provocative measures on 25 July 2021.

President Saied’s reliance on Article 72 of the Constitution in his decision is irrelevant, as it states: "The President of the Republic is the Head of State and the symbol of its unity. He guarantees its independence and continuity, and ensures respect of the Constitution."

   By dissolving Tunisia’s parliament, President Saied deals a heavy blow to the democratic project that Tunisians started more than 10 years ago   

Parliament did not pose any threat to the independence or continuity of the country. Therefore, such a landmark decision cannot be made legally under these broadly worded powers.

President Saied's decision is apparently a retaliatory response that came just hours after parliament held a session centered on ending his “exceptional” measures. However, bypassing the Constitution and retaliating by invoking measures that affect the present-day reality and future of Tunisian citizens is unacceptable.

The Tunisian president continues to act unilaterally, without respecting constitutional law, which he pledged to abide by upon taking office.

Unfortunately, Tunisia is now closer than ever to one-man totalitarian rule. The dissolution of parliament, and consequently of democratic elections in the country, ensures that Tunisians' opinions will not be heard, and that coercion will factor prominently into their choices.

By dissolving Tunisia’s parliament today, President Saied deals a heavy blow to the democratic project that Tunisians started more than 10 years ago. Though they implemented institutions to fulfill their aspirations for a better future, today's decision damages these efforts and further complicates the political scene in the country.

We stress the need for President Kais Saied to immediately retract his illegal decision to dissolve parliament, commit to respecting the constitution and the law, and take measures to reduce political tension and make dialogue possible.