Tunisian court sentences

Tunisian Court Sentences Murderers of Left-Wing Politician Chokri Belaid: Death Penalty and Life Sentences Handed Down

A Tunisian court sentenced four people to death and two to life in prison for the murder of left-wing politician Chokri Belaid. Belaid, the 48-year-old leader of the Popular Front coalition, was shot in his car outside his home in Tunis in February 2013.

His assassination prompted mass protests and led to the resignation of the then-prime minister. The case was reopened last month after a former investigating judge was arrested on suspicion of concealing certain files. Two dozen defendants were ultimately charged in a sprawling case that took years to investigate and bring to trial. One died in prison.

Out of the 23 defendants sentenced, five were acquitted, while others received sentences ranging from two to 120 years. The dismissals were due to the similarity of sentences already handed down against some defendants in other cases.

Belaid had gained a following for his criticisms of Ennahda, the Islamist party that rose to power after President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali became the first dictator toppled in the 2011 Arab Spring uprisings.

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