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Careful in Tunisia, warns former insider

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Careful in Tunisia, warns former insider

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Ahmed Bennour, a former deputy Interior Secretary of Tunisia, has told euronews he is optimistic about new relations with Europe.

Ali Takach, euronews:
How are the country’s constitution and security looking?

Ahmed Bennour:
I personally always warned Tunisians about Ben Ali. I knew him personally. I was sure that he was not fit to shoulder his responsibilities. His culture and his party and even his personal projects were projects of hegemony, of power. He had no political project. The real problem is that he arranged a scorched earth policy conspiracy for his departure.

euronews:
What can you tell us about this conspiracy?

Bennour:
The presidential security director, an officer I know since the 1970s, began to arm his men to fight the army, and then they attacked the private and public properties. This diabolical plan was predicted. We saw how he did it to force Habib Bourguiba from power in November 1987.

euronews:
So, do you think in the future we could see some acts of sabotage, explosions?

Bennour:
Anything is possible. I invite everyone to be careful in Tunisia. The country is open for anything.

euronews:
Will neighbouring Arab countries have role in what’s going to happen in Tunisia?

Bennour:
I confirm that the relationship with Algeria is excellent, and that President Abdelaziz Boutaflika and his party know very well how to respect Tunisia, and I don’t think the Algerian government will act against the will of the Tunisian people; on the other hand, the statement of President Muammar al-Gaddafi has shocked the political elite in Tunisia, because saying that Ben Ali is the best person in Tunisia is a reckless interference in its affairs.

euronews:
How do you see the role of Western countries towards this revolution? Are the American and European roles s positive for Tunisia?

Bonnour:
In recent times the West and especially France and some European countries have resigned themselves to play a role in Tunisia. But I am optimistic about the future of relations —particularly with France, with which we have excellent links. Then the difficult period in which we lived and in which France has not taken a firm stance against the dictatorship… I think even the French have regretted this step, and now is the right moment to think of the future of our peoples.