Tunisia's PM to push ahead with technocrat gov't

Associated Press
Cars burn next to the cemetery where thousands of Tunisians are gathered at el Jallez cemetery to attend the funerals of slain opposition leader Chokri Belaid, near Tunis, Friday Feb. 8, 2013. The Wednesday Feb. 6 assassination of prominent government critic Chokri Belaid plunged the country into one of its deepest political crises since the overthrow of the dictatorship in 2011.(AP Photo/Hassene Dridi)

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TUNIS, Tunisia (AP) — Tunisia's prime minister says that despite opposition from his own party, he will craft a new, technocrat-heavy cabinet to guide the country out of its political crisis.

Hamadi Jebali expressed confidence Friday that he would secure the support of his Ennahda Party, the moderate Islamist grouping that holds the most seats in the elected assembly.

In a statement carried by state media, Jebali says he will not dissolve the existing government, which would require the approval of the president, but simply replace certain ministers with technocrats.

This week's assassination of leftist opposition politician Chokri Belaid has deepened differences between the ruling party and its detractors, who had demanded a government shake-up.

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