TUNIS, Tunisia (AP) — Tunisia's powerful Islamist party said Sunday that it will not back the country's new coalition government in an upcoming confidence vote.
Since overthrowing its authoritarian president in 2011, Tunisians have been enmeshed in a long drawn out democratic transition that is supposed to have ended with elections and the new government.
The Cabinet presented Friday by the nationalist Nida Tunis party which dominated elections, contains only one other party giving the coalition only 102 seats, less than half of the 217-seat assembly.
The failure of the new government could have serious implications for the fragile country that has been rocked by unrest and economic strife since the revolution.
"The country needs a government of national union and consensus to make the necessary reforms and realize the objectives of the revolution," said Fathi Ayadi of the Islamist Ennahda Party, explaining its position.
Newly elected President Beiji Caid Essebsi, who founded Nida Tunis, had promised an inclusive government, but in the end only one other party would join the coalition, leaving it vulnerable to defeat in parliament.
Despite a successful democratic transition that is unique in the region, Tunisia still has serious economic problems that will require broad support to tackle.
The left-wing Popular Front party has also said it will go against the new government in the vote set for Tuesday.
Abdelaziz Kotti, a parliamentarian from Nida Tunis, told The Associated Press that support for the new Cabinet is not even unanimous within the party itself.