Tunisia profile

Outgoing president: Moncef Marzouki

Tunisian president Moncef Marzouki Moncef Marzouki opposed his predecessor and was forced into exile

Veteran dissident Moncef Marzouki was installed as president in December 2011, a few months after the popular protests which forced autocratic leader Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali from power and which inspired the Arab Spring uprisings across the region.

Members of the constitutional assembly, the interim parliament, voted to elect Mr Marzouki as president, the second most powerful role after the prime minister.

He was widely respected for his opposition to President Ben Ali, and was initially seen as a counterweight to the Islamist Ennahda party, which became the country's dominant political force in the elections of October 2011.

But secular forces of left and right, ranging from trade unions and civil rights groups to supporters of the Ben Ali era, accused President Marzouki of failing to restrain Ennahda's authoritarian tendencies.

They rallied behind the Nidaa Tounes anti-Islamist party, which scored decisive wins at parliamentary and presidential elections in late 2014.

Interim Prime Minister: Mehdi Jomaa

Mr Jomaa's interim government of technocrats took over in January 2014 as part of a deal between the Islamist Ennahda party's governing coalition and opposition parties, to oversee preparations for parliamentary and presidential elections in the autumn.

This ended the political deadlock that followed the assassination of leftwing politician Mohamed Brahimi in July 2013, for which the opposition held Ennahda responsible.

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