JNN 25 Aug 2013 Tunis : Thousands of protesters marched in Tunis Saturday, on the first day of a planned week-long campaign aimed at bringing down the Salafi -led government, amid political deadlock in the country.
They headed in the direction of the national assembly, where activists and opposition MPs have gathered regularly since the July 25 assassination of secular politician Mohamed Brahmi, demanding the departure of the government led by the Salafi party Ennahda.
“The people want the fall of the regime,” “Get out!” and “(Ennahda leader Rached) Ghannouchi assassin,” were some of the slogans chanted by the protesters.
More than an hour after the start of the protest the numbers continued to grow.
The opposition National Salvation Front (NSF) is hoping the demonstration will trigger a week of protests across the country that will force Ennahda’s resignation and lead to the formation of a non-partisan administration.
Saturday’s protest comes amid political turmoil in nearby Egypt, where the army overthrew Islamist president Mohamed Mursi last month after millions of protesters took to the streets demanding that he step down.
It also follows efforts by Tunisia’s powerful UGTT trade union to mediate between the opposition and the ruling Islamists and find a way out of the crisis.
The talks have made little progress since they began at the start of the month, with the NSF insisting on Friday that any negotiations prior to the government’s resignation were a “waste of time.”
The opposition accuses Ennahda of failing to rein in Tunisia’s hardline Salafi movement, which is blamed for murdering Brahmi and Chokri Belaid, another prominent secular politician whose assassination in February brought down the first Ennahda-led coalition.
Tunisian Salafists have called for murder of anyone who is opposing the ruling system in the North African country.
A main Salafi movement has posted a video online, calling for its followers to kill anyone who protests against the government in Tunisia. As the Salafi / Wahabi Organisations are extremist all around the world and are trying to Impose their Interpretation of Islam and rules on every one by force .
They threatened in their video to terrorize anti-government figures and cut off their heads.
The video is said to have gathered attention among Salafis.
Tunisia, the birthplace of pro-democracy protests across North Africa and the Middle East, is struggling with a democratic changeover after the overthrow of its dictator in 2011.
Meanwhile, as the opposition parties have started Protesting and say they will launch an alternative government and force the current one to step down.
However, Salafis have been rejecting democracy-seeking trends in the country and threatening opposition figures.
Tunisia has seen numerous clashes between the authorities and extremist Salafist groups over the past few months.
In July the Tunisian interior minister blamed Salafis for the assassination of leading opposition figure Mohamed Brahmi.
Brahmi was gunned down outside his home by two gunmen on a motorcycle in Tunis on July 25th.