Tunisia.. “Appeal” upholds a prison sentence for Ghannouchi and refers 12 to the terrorism department

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Today, Friday, the Tunisian Court of Appeal upheld a preliminary ruling imprisoning the leader of the Ennahdha movement, Rached Ghannouchi, for 3 years and imposing a fine, in the case related to his party accepting financial donations from a foreign party. It also referred 12 other people to the criminal department specialized in terrorism cases.

The official Tunisian News Agency said that the Court of Appeal issued a ruling approving a previous preliminary ruling issued months ago in what is known in the media as the “Loubing” case filed against the Ennahda Movement, its president, Ghannouchi, and his son-in-law, Rafik Bouchlaka.

Tunisian television quoted the spokesman for the Court of Appeal, Habib Tarkhani, as saying, “The Court of Appeal approved a previous preliminary ruling issued at the beginning of last February, which ruled that Ghannouchi and Bouchlaka be imprisoned for a period of 3 years, with immediate effect, in the case related to obtaining foreign financial funds.”

Accused of terrorism

In another case, Tunisian television said that the indictment chamber responsible for examining terrorism cases at the Court of Appeal referred 12 defendants – including leaders of the Ennahda movement – to the judiciary “for charges of a terrorist nature.”

Court spokesman Habib Tarkhani explained that the aforementioned indictment chamber decided on Thursday to refer Munther Al-Wanissi, Vice-President of the Ennahda Movement (detained), Rafik Abdel Salam (son-in-law of the head of the Ennahdha Movement), Sheherazade Okasha, Ahmed Qaloul, Tariq Bou Bahri, Reda Idris, and Moaz Al-Khereiji, Maher Zaid, Mohamed Fathi Al-Ayadi, and Mohamed Al-Samti (all on the run) are before the criminal department responsible for examining terrorism cases at the Court of First Instance in Tunisia.

It also decided – according to Al-Tarkhani – to refer two other defendants to prison (whose identity was not specified), in what is known in the media as “the case of conspiracy against state security 2.”