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Tunisian ministry suspends 4 employees following leak

Published: Updated:

The Tunisian Ministry of Interior announced on Thursday that four of its employees, including two senior security officers, were suspended from work amid an investigation into leaked security documents showing the ministry’s prior knowledge to the assassination of opposition leaders Mohammed Brahmi and Chokri Belaïd.

“After conducting the necessary research regarding the leaked documents and information, the ministry decided to suspend two security leaders and two other employees from work, in coordination with the civil and military judiciary,” said the interior ministry in a statement.

Tayeb Oqaili, a member of an initiative aiming to expose the truth about Brahmi’s assassination, revealed security documents showing that the interior ministry was informed in advance of plans to assassinate Brahmi but did not make any arrests relating to the plot.

Last month, Oqaili published a leaked security document from the Interior Ministry showing that the ministry has received in July 12, 2013 a warning from the CIA regarding the possibility of targeting MP Brahmi, 10 days before he was shot dead in front of his house.

The Tunisian Interior Minister, Lotfi Ben Jeddo, has admitted that the Ministry of Interior was aware of threats to Brahmi 11 days prior to his killing.

Accusation

Tunisian opposition parties accused the ruling Ennahda party of forming a parallel security apparatus within the Interior Ministry and appointing their affiliates in high-ranking positions.

“The leaked documents in the assassination of Brahmi or in other cases, confirm that the ministry’s files are now accessible to everyone and maybe to foreign embassies. Tunisia is now tormented with insecurity and structural crises,” Wael Bouziane, a journalist specialized in security affairs told Al Arabiya TV.

Statistics published by the interior ministry in 2012 show 65,000 security personnel are working in various security departments within the institution. 6,000 new employees were assigned in the ministry when Ennahda came into power in 2011.