20 Jan 2011

More protests in Tunis

8:38 am on 20 January 2011

More protests took place in Tunis, the capital of Tunisia, on Wednesday with demonstrators calling on the allies of ousted President Zine Al-Abidine Ben Ali to stop clinging to power.

A national unity cabinet has reportedly postponed its first meeting.

Ministers are discussing how to resolve deep divisions over the make-up of the new interim government.

The BBC reports Prime Minister Mohamed Ghannouchi is under pressure from opposition leaders and protesters who say there is no place for allies of the former president.

Four opposition members quit the new unity government on Tuesday.

Mr Ben Ali fled to Saudi Arabia on Friday after weeks of protests over poverty and unemployment.

Meanwhile, a curfew has been shortened, but a state of emergency that bans any public assemblies remains in place.

In other developments on Wednesday, the head of the Arab League linked the upheaval in Tunisia to deteriorating economic conditions throughout the Arab world.

"The Arab soul is broken by poverty, unemployment and general recession," Amr Moussa said at the opening of an Arab League summit in the Egyptian resort of Sharm el-Sheikh.