DIGNITY – Danish Institute Against Torture expresses its deep concern regarding the adoption of Presidential Decree No. 117 of 22 September 2021 by the Tunisian Presidency and warns of the further concentration of executive, legislative and judicial powers that this decree confers on President Kais Saied. This is a worrisome development in Tunisia’s democratic process, and undermines the respect for rule of law. The invocation of emergency powers undertaken by the Tunisian President are not in line with international law, which requires that any such measures be temporary and within the bounds of rule of law.
DIGNITY calls for a swift return to the Constitutional order and separation of powers which are cornerstones of democracy and human rights. While there may be legitimate reasons for reforming the Tunisian political system, any such reforms must be carried out through the democratic framework established by the Constitution and through an inclusive dialogue involving the full spectrum of State, political and civil society actors and institutions.
“Tunisia has previously served as an example of dialogue and peaceful solutions to internal political crises, resulting in the award of the Nobel Peace Prize to the Tunisian National Dialogue Quartet in 2015,” said Rasmus Grue Christensen, DIGNITY’s CEO.
“All necessary measures must be taken ensure that the peaceful democratic transition process is maintained and protected.”