Abdelmajid Tebboune, Tunisian meteorologist

Sometimes there is only one simple little sentence to turn everything upside down and turn an entire country upside down.

For three days, political observers around the world have been analyzing the statement made by US President Joe Biden in Japan about Taiwan.

For Tunisians, this brief verdict was handed down in Rome yesterday during a joint press conference between Algerian President Abdelmajid Tebboune and his Italian counterpart Sergio Mattarella.

We are ready to help Tunisia get out of the difficult situation it has fallen into and to return to the democratic path, just as much as neighboring Libya. said Mr. Tebboune.

Surprising, very surprising when one knows that Algeria is one of the most reserved countries and that it is not at all in its habits to launch small murderous phrases.

If Abdelmajid Tebboune thus spoke of Tunisia and allowed himself to “interfere” in Tunisia’s internal affairs, it is because something is on the way.

Tunisia is in the midst of a political crisis with a president who has seized full powers and is preparing to change the country’s constitution on its own. It has clearly left the democratic path, and many (Western) countries confirm it.

What the Algerian president said weighs nothing compared to what the US State Department or the EU has said on several occasions. An MEP even dared to say that Tunisian President Kaïs Saïed is autistic.

But Mr Tebboune’s remarks sparked a lively controversy in Tunisia. Some see it as pure interference in the country’s internal affairs. This is the case with the propagandist Riadh Jrad, Eternal Praise of the President, who invited the fifty thousand subscribers to his Facebook page to respond to this interference. For him, all Tunisians must support the President of the Republic when there is foreign aggression. It seems that the columnist got a quick slap on the hand as he quickly removed the post from his side.

It is that the Tunisian power is seeking to stifle the Algerian president’s statement.

Normally impulsive, Kaïs Saïed was (for once) discreet and did not often respond too tat, as he regularly does to his opponents and critics, including foreigners. We still remember how he described the international rating agencies “byOmmek Sannefa as they had the bad idea of ​​downgrading Tunisia’s sovereign rating. To the countries that wanted to send international observers to the referendum, he opposed a niet that reminded of Tunisia’s sovereignty and independence.

Oddly enough, both he and his many defenders have kept a low profile since yesterday.

Although the judgment of the Algerian president is very brief, it has nothing easy or unjustified. It means a lot and weighs a lot more than the European and American press releases combined.

There are four countries with which Tunisia has very little leeway, namely Algeria, France, Italy and Libya. The order of the countries is not random. Informed political observers know this very well, and Kaïs Saïed is aware of it.

He can in no way accuse his Algerian counterpart of interference, the one who has repeatedly asked him to help himself and help Tunisia. We still remember all the gifts of oxygen and vaccines that the big sister offers. The latest is in January. We particularly remember those $ 300 million that were lent out last December, which made it possible to feed the state budget in order to pay the salaries of civil servants, as the Minister of Finance admitted.

Until then, Abdelmajid Tebboune has always shown support for Kaïs Saïed. He even closed his eyes when the latter plagiarized an Algerian law to put his decree against speculation.

Just a month ago, he said that “ Algeria is surrounded by countries that do not look like it, with the exception of Tunisia “.

What made him change his mind?

The chaotic and despotic leadership of Kaïs Saïed is well criticized in Tunisia. Whether we like it or not, this has an impact on its neighborhood, whose stability depends on Tunisia’s stability. But Tunisia is currently on quicksand. In addition to a large section of the political class, the president has alienated the powerful trade union. “Kaïs Saïed’s isolation” was the name of the French daily Le Figaro yesterday. Kaïs Saïed sends the Tunisians for a ride, the headline Business News reported yesterday.

What affects Tunisia necessarily affects Algeria and vice versa. This also applies to France, Italy and Libya.

If Abdelmajid Tebboune allowed himself to break the legendary Algerian reserve, it is because we are starting to get tired of this president who decides alone, without consulting anyone, and who does not take into account his own national and international balances. .

There is clearly eel under stone, and the Algerian president, like his Italian counterpart, knows something about it.

What’s getting ready? Get reliable information, to tell the truth, but Mr. Tebboune still gives us an idea of ​​the weather in Tunisia.

The start time of the aircraft is approaching “Cynically deployed the deputy for Attayar Nabil Hajji. Clearly implied with former President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali’s flight.

Analyze well, as it should, his sentence, and you will know that things will move analyzed lawyer and activist Dalila Msaddek after pointing out that the Algerian president did not say he would help the government or the president, did not say he would help diplomatically or financially, he said well ” we want to help Tunisia regain democracy “.

Already isolated in Tunisia, Kaïs Saïed was warned by the Americans and Europeans. Emmanuel Macron advised him well to find the democratic path. Has he now gotten rid of the Algerians?

Mr. Tebboune’s epic phrase will resonate for a long time in the ears of Tunisian Democrats.

Raouf Ben Hedi

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