Tunisia's bank governor is fired after EU blacklists nation

AP News
Posted: Feb 07, 2018 1:58 PM

TUNIS, Tunisia (AP) — Tunisia's prime minster has removed the governor of its central bank hours after the European Parliament put the North African country on a blacklist of non-EU nations amid fears it posed a risk over money laundering and terrorist financing.

Prime Minister Youssef Chahed proposed Wednesday to replace Chedli Ayari with 58-year-old Marouane El Abassi, currently the representative of Tunisia and Libya to the World Bank.

Tunisian media has accused the Central Bank of Tunisia under Ayari of turning a blind eye to "obscure transfers" received from non-governmental organizations and political parties.

Lawmakers who opposed the inclusion of Tunisia on the EU blacklist said the burgeoning democracy needs support, not punishment, and the move discounts Tunisia's efforts to bolster its financial structures.