Tunisia declares state of emergency after beach attack

A handout picture released by the Tunisian Presidency Press Service shows Tunisian President Beji Caid Essebsi (R) speaking during a press conference in Tunis on July 4, 2015. (AFP)

Tunisia’s president said the country is “not safe” from further extremist attacks and has declared a national state of emergency to avoid what he says is a risk of collapse.

President Beji Caid Essebsi’s speech Saturday came just over a week after a gunman at the popular beach resort of Sousse attacked foreign tourists, killing 38 people.

Essebsi said the state of emergency would last 30 days.

Meanwhile, an aide to the premier said that several Tunisian officials including the governor of Sousse have been sacked.

"Just as there have been security failures, there have also been political failures," the prime minister's communications adviser Dhafer Neji told AFP.

He said those fired included the governor of the Sousse region where the June 26 attack took place, as well as police officials.

Tunisia was previously under a state of emergency from January 2011, at the outbreak of the Arab Spring, until March 2014.

It initially included a curfew and a ban on meetings of more than three people. Although those measures were relaxed, police and the military retained powers to intervene in unrest or for security reasons.

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Last Update: 06:44 KSA 09:44 - GMT 06:44
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