TUNIS, Tunisia

Tunisian security forces reportedly detained lawmaker Faycal Tebbini on Monday for allegedly insulting an activist on social media.

Tebbini, a member of the Farmers’ Voice Party, said on Facebook that he was being questioned over a complaint filed against him for allegedly insulting a women’s rights activist last October.

On Saturday, Tunisian authorities briefly arrested lawmaker Maher Zaid in connection with defamation accusations filed by the country’s former Interior Minister Lotfi Brahem in 2018.

Last week, Tunisian President Kais Saied dismissed the government, suspended parliament, and assumed executive authority with the assistance of a new prime minister.

Under the recent exceptional presidential decisions, MPs no longer have parliamentary immunity that protects them from being arrested.

Tunisia is seen as the only country that succeeded in carrying out a democratic transition following the popular Arab Spring uprisings. But it failed to achieve economic and political stability, and the recent spike in coronavirus cases further fueled public frustration.

*Writing by Mahmoud Barakat

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