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Tunisia: Government

Government Tunisia
Country name:
conventional long form: Tunisian Republic
conventional short form: Tunisia
local short form: Tunis
local long form: Al Jumhuriyah at Tunisiyah
Government type:
republic
Capital:
Tunis
Administrative divisions:
24 governorates; Ariana (Aryanah), Beja (Bajah), Ben Arous (Bin 'Arus), Bizerte (Banzart), Gabes (Qabis), Gafsa (Qafsah), Jendouba (Jundubah), Kairouan (Al Qayrawan), Kasserine (Al Qasrayn), Kebili (Qibili), Kef (Al Kaf), Mahdia (Al Mahdiyah), Manouba (Manubah), Medenine (Madanin), Monastir (Al Munastir), Nabeul (Nabul), Sfax (Safaqis), Sidi Bou Zid (Sidi Bu Zayd), Siliana (Silyanah), Sousse (Susah), Tataouine (Tatawin), Tozeur (Tawzar), Tunis, Zaghouan (Zaghwan)
Independence:
20 March 1956 (from France)
National holiday:
Independence Day, 20 March (1956)
Constitution:
1 June 1959; amended 12 July 1988
Legal system:
based on French civil law system and Islamic law; some judicial review of legislative acts in the Supreme Court in joint session
Suffrage:
20 years of age; universal
Executive branch:
chief of state: President Zine El Abidine BEN ALI (since 7 November 1987)
head of government: Prime Minister Mohamed GHANNOUCHI (since 17 November 1999)
cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the president
elections: president elected by popular vote for a five-year term; election last held 24 October 1999 (next to be held NA 2004); prime minister appointed by the president
election results: President Zine El Abidine BEN ALI reelected for a third term without opposition; percent of vote - Zine El Abidine BEN ALI nearly 100%
Legislative branch:
unicameral Chamber of Deputies or Majlis al-Nuwaab (182 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms)
elections: last held 24 October 1999 (next to be held NA 2004)
election results: percent of vote by party - RCD 92%; seats by party - RCD 148, MDS 13, UDU 7, PUP 7, Al-Tajdid 5, PSL 2; note - reforms enabled opposition parties to win up to 20% of seats, increasing the number of seats they hold from 19 in the last election to 34 now
Judicial branch:
Court of Cassation or Cour de Cassation
Political parties and leaders:
Al-Tajdid Movement [Adel CHAOUCH]; Constitutional Democratic Rally Party (Rassemblement Constitutionnel Democratique) or RCD [President Zine El Abidine BEN ALI (official ruling party)]; Liberal Social Party or PSL [Mounir BEJI]; Movement of Democratic Socialists or MDS [Khamis CHAMMARI]; Popular Unity Party or PUP [Mohamed Belhaj AMOR]; Unionist Democratic Union or UDU [Abderrahmane TLILI]
Political pressure groups and leaders:
the Islamic fundamentalist party, Al Nahda (Renaissance), is outlawed
International organization participation:
ABEDA, ACCT, AfDB, AFESD, AL, AMF, AMU, BSEC (observer), ECA, FAO, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO, ITU, MIPONUH, MONUC, NAM, OAPEC, OAS (observer), OAU, OIC, OPCW, OSCE (partner), UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNMEE, UNMIBH, UNMIK, UPU, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTrO
Diplomatic representation in the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Hatem ATALLAH
FAX: [1] (202) 862-1858
telephone: [1] (202) 862-1850
chancery: 1515 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20005
Diplomatic representation from the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Rust M. DEMING
embassy: Zone Nord-Est des Berges du Lac Nord de Tunis, 2045 La Goulette, Tunisia
mailing address: use embassy street address
telephone: [216] 71 782-566
FAX: [216] 71 789-719
Flag description:
red with a white disk in the center bearing a red crescent nearly encircling a red five-pointed star; the crescent and star are traditional symbols of Islam

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Source: The CIA World Fact Book 2003

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