“Pre-election Messages”… Saied Digs into the Files of Tunisia’s Muslim Brotherhood

Once again, Tunisian President Kais Saied directs his focus towards the Muslim Brotherhood, sending implicit messages to an organization whose crimes are recorded in the annals of his years in power.

This came in a speech delivered by Saied last Saturday, on the sidelines of commemorating the 24th anniversary of the death of former Tunisian President Habib Bourguiba (1957-1987).

In his address, Saied touched on the issue of his candidacy for the upcoming presidential elections.

Speaking at Bourguiba’s mausoleum in the coastal governorate of Monastir, he said: “It’s not about ambition or desire, but a matter of survival or demise,” considering that “today’s duty obliges us to serve Tunisia from any position.”

In an indirect reference to the Muslim Brotherhood, he asked: “Why did they boycott the legislative elections and are now rushing towards the presidential elections?”.

He added: “The issue today is the country and continuing the national liberation struggle to save Tunisia from those who have tampered with it and corrupted it in every area and sector.”

He stressed that “it is not acceptable for groups that hide abroad to stand for elections”.

He went on to ask: “Have you ever heard of a president of a Western country standing for Tunisia? The candidate must be endorsed by Tunisians and elected by them, not from any other party. We are waging a war for the existence and survival or demise for the homeland. We are proud of our sovereignty and we will not sell it for the treasures of the world.”

According to Saied, “power is not an ambition, a seat, or a chair as they imagine and dream, but a responsibility… We remain faithful to our oath to our Lord and our people to purify the country from those who have corrupted it in every area.”

“Artificial difficulties”

He insisted: “We remain faithful to our oath and will never retreat… Whoever wants to hinder citizens and prospects of the administration (governmental institutions) by denying them the services that should be provided, has no place in the administration.”

Tunisia is gearing up for presidential elections next fall, the 12th in the country and the third since 2011, during which Tunisians will choose the eighth president of the Republic for a five-year term.

The current presidential term ends in October. Since taking office, Saied has engaged in a fierce battle against the Muslim Brotherhood, reopening files they had tried to keep in the dark after being rejected by the people.

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