Tunisia's PM resigns after protests

Tunisian Prime Minister Mohamed Ghannouchi announced his resignation today over state television, following a wave of street protests.
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Updated on Feb 27, 2011 09:53 PM IST
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Reuters | By, Tunis

Tunisian Prime Minister Mohamed Ghannouchi announced his resignation on Sunday over state television, following a wave of street protests.

Critics have accused Ghannouchi of being too close to the North African state's former government, toppled in an uprising last month. The beleaguered PM has also fallen short on popular expectations on political reforms and of failing to amass the political will to do push forward the reforms agenda.

"My resignation will provide a better atmosphere for the new era," he said, adding he wanted to prevent more victims in the country's political unrest.

Three people have been killed and several wounded in clashes between security forces and demonstrators since Friday over Ghannouchi's role in the interim government.

"My resignation is in the service of the country," he said on state TV.

North Africa's most developed state has been in flux since a wave of protests toppled former President Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali on January 14 this year, encouraging a similar revolt in Egypt and triggering protests across the Arab world.

But many Tunisians have become frustrated over the slow pace of change since the revolution. Ghannouchi restated the government's pledge to hold elections to replace Ben Ali by July 15 this year.

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