Statue of murdered Tunisian opposition leader vandalized

Updated 19 February 2013
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Statue of murdered Tunisian opposition leader vandalized

TUNIS: A statue erected in honor of murdered Tunisian opposition leader Chokri Belaid was found vandalized and broken into three pieces during the night, an AFP correspondent reported yesterday.
The memorial, installed as a work of contemporary art by Tunisian artists, was ripped off from its base and broken, and the flowers surrounding it were trampled and scattered. “This is a criminal act. Those who did this are inhuman, they have exceeded all limits,” said Besma Khalfaoui, the widow of Belaid who was gunned down in broad daylight on Feb. 6.
“It is the minister of interior who is responsible for this,” she said, referring to Ali Larayedh.
Khalfaoui said she had demanded police protection for her family and home but so far had not obtained it.
Belaid, a leftist leader and fierce critic of Tunisia’s ruling government, was shot dead by a gunman as he left his home.
His murder sparked a public outcry in Tunisia, plunging the country into its worst political crisis since the revolution two years ago that ousted former dictator Zine El Abidine Ben Ali.


Berlin backs Macron’s Iran plan

In our view this agreement should be maintained, Merkel said. (AFP)
Updated 27 April 2018
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Berlin backs Macron’s Iran plan

  • Merkel will discuss Iran with Trump on a visit on Friday
  • Macron acknowledged that he does not know what Trump will decide

BERLIN, PARIS: Proposals presented by French President Emmanuel Macron on Iran’s nuclear deal are based on the existing international agreement but would add some new elements, a senior German official said on Thursday.

Speaking before Chancellor Angela Merkel heads to Washington for talks with US President Donald Trump, the official said: “The premise of Macron’s proposal is that the agreement remains in its existing form and additional elements come on top.” The official added: “In our view this agreement should be maintained.”

Trump has said he is not happy with the 2015 accord and may pull out of it. 

Iran’s President Hasan Rouhani insisted the deal cannot be changed or built on. 

The plan announced during Macron’s trip is part of European efforts to persuade Trump not to abandon the accord next month.

Merkel will discuss Iran with Trump on a visit on Friday.

The French president has meanwhile defended discussions with Trump for a new plan to curb Iranian nuclear weapons. Speaking to reporters before leaving Washington on Wednesday night, Macron said the new four-pronged agreement would be a “very important complement” to the existing 2015 accord.

Macron insisted on the importance of talking to all sides, including Iran ally Russia, and said the world should not force anything on Iran. He acknowledged that he does not know what Trump will decide.