Former speaker of Tunisia is in court due to "terror links"

Tunis: The speaker of Tunisia's dissolved parliament appeared Monday before a judge probing claims that his party helped Tunisian extremists leave the country to fight in Iraq and Syria.

Rachid Ghannouchi, a fierce rival of President Kais Saied and leader of the Ennahda party, arrived at an anti-terrorism court in a suburb of Tunis in the morning, according to one of his lawyers, Mokhtar Zemai.

According to the judge, at the conclusion of the hearing the 81-year-old will either be charged or not.

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Since Syed toppled the Ennahda-backed government and assumed total executive power in July 2021, several other Ennahda leaders have been questioned in connection with the "shipment of extremists" case.

Following the 2011 uprising in Tunisia, thousands of Tunisians joined terrorist organizations in Libya as well as Daesh in its strongholds in Iraq and Syria.

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Ennahda's rivals, which ruled Tunisian politics until Saied's actions in 2012, accused the group of aiding his departure.

The party has consistently denied these allegations, calling them "fabricated" and claiming that the authorities are attempting to divert attention from "economic and social concerns and the deterioration of people's living conditions".

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On 10 November, Ghannouchi additionally appeared before a judge in connection with a count related to money laundering and "incitement to violence".

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