New Tunisia protests against Saudi crown prince's visit

2018-11-27 17:15
Tunisians shout slogans and hold up signs as they protest against the expected visit of the Saudi Crown Prince to the country, in Habib Bourguiba Avenue in the capital Tunis. (AFP)

Tunisians shout slogans and hold up signs as they protest against the expected visit of the Saudi Crown Prince to the country, in Habib Bourguiba Avenue in the capital Tunis. (AFP)

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Hundreds of Tunisian protesters marched through the capital Tunis in opposition to a planned visit Tuesday by Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, urging justice over the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

The demonstrators shouted "Go away assassin!" and held placards with slogans including "The people want Bin Salman to be judged", "No to the killer of Yemeni children" and "You're not welcome".

It was the second protest in as many days against the de facto Saudi ruler, who was expected to fly into Tunis from Egypt on Tuesday for talks with President Beji Caid Essebsi as part of a regional tour.

It comes as Khashoggi's murder leads to increased scrutiny of Saudi Arabia's role in Yemen's devastating war.

"It's inhuman to see an Arab leader killing his brothers in Yemen, and the murder of a journalist is the icing on the cake," said Basma Rezgui, a teacher brandishing a red-stained saw.

Saudi Arabia has faced intense global criticism over the killing of insider-turned-critic Khashoggi in its Istanbul consulate on October 2.

He was reportedly dismembered in what Saudi Arabia said was a "rogue" operation, but CIA analysis leaked to the US media pointed the finger at Prince Mohammed.

His visit will be the first by a Saudi royal to Tunisia since the 2011 revolution deposed longtime dictator Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, who fled to Saudi Arabia.

The Saudi crown prince has also held talks in the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt on his first foreign tour since the Khashoggi affair erupted.

In Cairo, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi praised the "unshakable strategic alliance between Egypt and Saudi Arabia" during Prince Mohammed's visit there, the state daily Al-Ahram reported Tuesday.

"The stability and security of Saudi Arabia is an integral part of Egypt's security," Sisi was quoted as saying.

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