Arab Organisation for Human Rights in the UK (AOHR UK) expresses its deep concern over the abusive language spoken by Tunisian President Kais Saeed against opponents. This comes in line with the launch of arbitrary arrest campaigns against opponents that have included activists, media professionals and politicians.
More than once, Kais Saeed used hateful language against opposition and dissidents, where he used phrases describing them like “drunk”, “to the dustbin of history, their place is dustbins”, “hired agents from abroad”, and “like cancer cells that must be treated with chemicals.”
AOHR UK warned that such inciting language would ignite violence between supporters and opponents since it is an open invitation for the use of violence against anyone opposing the regime. It is very possible that this would lead to similar scenarios of repression and the use of lethal weapons against opponents like that in Egypt, Syria, Libya, and Yemen.
Kais Saeed dissolved parliament, suspended elections, introduced amendments to the constitution, and undermined the judiciary in order to strengthen the security grip with which he rules the country. Since then, campaigns of arrests were carried out by direct orders from him against anyone speaking about the affairs of the country.
Over the past two weeks, the Tunisian security services carried out a campaign of arrests that included the deputy head of the Ennahda movement and former Minister of Justice Noureddine Al-Buhairi, the politician Khayyam Al-Turki and the businessman Kamal Latif, the former leader of the Ennahda movement Abdelhamid Jelassi, and the director of the independent radio station “Mosaïque FM”, Noureddine Boutar, the former head of the Court of Cassation, Al-Tayeb Rashed, the former investigative judge, Al-Bashir Al-Akrami, the leader of the National Salvation Front, Shaimaa Issa, the Secretary-General of the Republican Party, Essam Al-Shabi, and others.
Moreover, 14 lawyers from the defence teams for political opponents and activists were summoned for investigation without disclosing any reasons or information, except that the investigating judge will start the hearings in March.
The measures taken by Kais Saeed aim to eliminate the opposition and end its role, which was evident in the widespread restrictions on freedom of assembly and attacks on demonstrators last month.
AOHR UK called on the Tunisian political forces and civil society institutions to defend the rule of law, protect democracy, reject all human rights violations, and refuse to use the judiciary and security services to settle political disputes. Otherwise, all gains made by the Tunisian people in their revolution, the last remaining hope of the Arab Spring, would go to waste.