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Tunisia's Islamist PM stands down

Tunisia's Islamist prime minister has announced his resignation in favour of a caretaker government that will supervise new elections.

Ali Larayedh of the moderate Islamist Ennahda Party had agreed to step down after lengthy negotiations with the opposition following a political crisis brought about by the assassination of a left-wing politician in July.

The resignation of the Ennahda-led government in favour of a cabinet of technocrats has been seen as an implicit admission of the Islamists' failure to manage the transition following the 2011 overthrow of Tunisia's dictator.

Tunisia's assembly is in the process of approving a new constitution, and elections for a new government will be held this year.

"I hope the country will be a model for democratic transition," Mr Larayedh told reporters today after presenting his resignation at the presidential palace.



From Belfast Telegraph