Tunisia's opposition has never been so divided. Two of the most influential official parties, the Progressive Democratic party (PDP) and the Democratic Forum for Labour and Liberties (FTDL), are boycotting tomorrow's election, while the Ettajdid (Renewal) movement is still in the running, despite considerable restrictions. Non-recognised opposition parties, including the Islamist Ennahda movement, the Communist Party of Tunisian Workers (PCOT) and the Congress for the Republic (CPR), called its participation "irresponsible".
The debate on participation has been focused on the electoral system, which doesn't permit opposition parties to achieve a breakthrough. President Ben Ali's Democratic Constitutional Rally (RCD), the ruling party, has such a stranglehold on the political arena that, since 1999, it has given 25% of the parliamentary seats to carefully-selected members of the opposition, to maintain a semblance of pluralism.… Seguir leyendo »