Tunisia Politics

Curious about politics in Tunisia? This page may shed some light.

TUNISIA - President Kais Saïed
Kais Saïed
7th President of Tunisia
Assumed office
23 October 2019
Image credit
The politics of Tunisia takes place within the framework of a unitary semi-presidential representative democratic republic, with a President serving as head of state, Prime Minister as head of government, a unicameral legislature and a court system influenced by French civil law. Between 1956 and 2011, Tunisia operated as a de facto one-party state, with politics dominated by the secular Constitutional Democratic Rally (RCD) under former Presidents Habib Bourguiba and then Zine el Abidine Ben Ali. However, in 2011 a national uprising led to the ousting of the President and the dismantling of the RCD, paving the way for a multi-party democracy. October 2014 saw the first democratic parliamentary elections since the 2011 revolution, resulting in a win by the secularist Nidaa Tounes party with 85 seats in the 217-member assembly.
Tunisia is a member of the Arab League, the African Union and the Organization of Islamic Cooperation. It maintains close relations with the United States, France and the European Union, with which it entered an Association Agreement in 1995. Tunisia’s favorable relations with the United States and the European Union were earned following years of successful economic cooperation in the private sector and infrastructure modernization.  The Economist Intelligence Unit rated Tunisia a “flawed democracy” in 2020, putting it in the same category as the United States and France. Tunisia is considered the only democracy in the Arab world.
Tunisia’s first democratically elected president Beji Caid Essebsi died in July 2019. After him Kais Saied became Tunisia’s president after a landslide victory in the 2019 Tunisian presidential elections in October 2019. He had reputation of not being corruptible. However, in mid 2021 he suspended Parliament, fired the prime minister and consolidated power in what opponents called a “coup.”
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