2nd hunger striker dies in Tunisia

2012-11-17 20:41
Demonstrators throw stones during a protest against an anti-Islam film outside the US Embassy in Tunis. (File, AP)

Demonstrators throw stones during a protest against an anti-Islam film outside the US Embassy in Tunis. (File, AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

kalahari.com

Tunis - A key figure in Tunisia's Salafist movement, Mohammed Bakhti, died on Saturday after going on hunger strike over his arrest for an attack on the US embassy, the second such death this week, his lawyer said.

"He died in hospital at around 02:00 (01:00 GMT)," said Abdelbasset Ben Mbarek, noting his death followed that of another jailed member of the hardline Islamist movement, Bechir Gholli, who died on Thursday also after refusing food for nearly two months.

The lawyer had warned for several days that Bakhti, who was suffering from a brain haemorrhage, was in critical condition.

The moderate Islamist party Ennahda, which heads Tunisia's ruling coalition, called for a "rapid and transparent probe" to determine "the circumstances of the arrests and detentions as well as the causes of death and the hunger strikes".

Detention conditions

Bakhti and Gholli started their hunger strike in late September, days after their arrest in connection with a September 14 attack on the US embassy by a crowd of Islamists during which four of the assailants were killed in clashes with security forces.

They insisted they were innocent and protested over the conditions of detention, while the Salafist movement charged it was being victimised by the authorities.

Bakhti was considered a senior figure in the jihadist movement and close to Abu Iyad, the alleged organiser of the embassy attack who is on the run.

Justice Minister Noureddine Bhiri of Ennahda said on Friday that Bakhti had been released on November 11. "His health deteriorated after his release," he said.

But Ben Mbarek said that Bakhti had been in a coma and was dying. The decision to free him was taken because the authorities knew "he was about to die", the lawyer said.

100+ detained

Bakhti was jailed for 12 years in 2007 for bloody clashes between the army and Islamists in Soliman, near Tunis, under Zine El Abidine Ben Ali's regime but released under an amnesty declared after the 2011 revolution.

In the attack on the US mission, hundreds of protesters, angry over an anti-Islam film made in the United States, stormed the sprawling embassy compound in a suburb of Tunis.

More than 100 people were detained following the attack.

Tunisia's hardline Islamists have carried out numerous acts of violence since last year's revolution that ousted Ben Ali.

Read more on:    tunisia  |  prophet protests  |  religion  |  north africa
NEXT ON NEWS24X
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
4 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/Wine
 

You HAVE to see this MTB Tsunami Fip!

You might not know what a Tsunami Flip is, but just watching this will turn your eyes into saucers. Check out this first-ever MTB Tsunami Flip in contest here.

 
 

Where were you when you last felt alive?

Bear Grylls’ top 10 things kids should do outdoors
Mountain unicycling – say WHAT?
Top tips to ensure you’re running right
Stand-up paddle boarding a great workout

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Jobs in Western Cape region

Project Manager (Marketing)

Cape Town
Datafin Recruitment

HR Manager

Cape Town Southern Suburbs
DAV Professional Placement Group
R360 000 Per Year

Client Support Consultant

Western Cape
Newsclip Media Monitoring (Pty) Ltd

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Deal of the week!

20% off Afrikaans books, music and DVDs. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Save up to R1000 on Hisense smartphones!

View the large range of Hisense smartphones. Buy today and save up to R1000!

Hot gaming titles – available for pre-order!

Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare Day Zero Edition, Far Cry 4, Grand Theft Auto 5 and more. Pre-order now!

Get a free eBook

Buy 3 eBooks and get the cheapest FREE. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Bargain box – 60% off

Reduced prices, very limited stock. While stocks last. Hurry and shop now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

Pushing too hard and doing too much may have left you feeling drained and overwhelmed. You may need time out to recharge and reset...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.