Saudi Arabia gives refuge to embattled Tunisian president

President Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali - Seeking refuge in Saudi Arabia

Tunisian president, El Abidine Ben Ali, flew out of his country on Friday after heavy demonstrations, and is reported to have arrived in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, where he is expected to seek refuge. The Royal court in Saudi Arabia has said in a statement published on Saturday. “Considering the exceptional circumstances facing the brotherly people of Tunisia, the Saudi government has welcomed President Ben Ali to the kingdom.” The Saudi government said in a statement published by the Saudi news Agency, that it is prepared to host the Tunisian leader because of the situation in his country.  Ben Ali headed for Saudi Arabia after being denied landing in France.  French President Nicolas Sarkozy was worried about the reaction of members of the Tunisian community who live in large numbers in France. The community is known for being extremely hostile to the ousted president.

On Friday, the country’s Prime Minister, Rachid Al Ghanouchi, made an announcement that he was taking over the powers of the president of the republic, quoting Article 56 of the country’s  Constitution. The new president gave assurances to the nation that he would  abide by the country’s Constitution and that he would  implement the planned political, social  and economic reforms announced after a series of consultations with the country’s political parties. But in a twist of event,  the Constitutional Court has on Saturday declared Senate president Faoud Al Moubdh as the country’s interim head of state.This definitely adds to the already volatile political drama unfolding in this North African state.

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