Give Tunisia's economy time, Marzouki tells euronews

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Give Tunisia's economy time, Marzouki tells euronews

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Nearly two months after his election, the challenges facing Tunisia’s new President Moncef Marzouki are daunting. More than a year after the revolution, the country’s security, social and above all economic problems are immense.

In an interview with Jamel Ezzedini of euronews, the former human rights activist and exiled opposition leader asked for patience.

“People must understand that the government has only been in place for two months. It needs two or three years to lay the solid foundations for economic renewal in the country. The government is in the process of laying the cornerstones for fundamental reforms of which we shall see the results in at least five years’ time. That’s what people are called upon to understand,” the president said.

Tunisians celebrated the first anniversary of the revolution last month, but elsewhere the battles of the Arab Spring still rage – namely, in Syria. Last weekend Tunisia became the only Arab nation to say it would expel its Syrian ambassador and stop recognising the Damascus regime.

“We are the first country to succeed with a revolution, we are regarded as a model,” Marzouki went on. “We have our national pride but we also have the duty to aid this (country’s) people. How can we help it? We are against military intervention, therefore, at least symbolically, we refuse to accept that the flag of the Baath regime is raised in our country. We have therefore taken this decision.”

The full interview with Tunisia’s President Marzouki will be broadcast several times on euronews, starting on Tuesday night at 21.45 Central European Time.