2013-10-24 13:43:00

Islamists may lose power in Tunisia after Egypt - Russian senator

Moscow, October 24, Interfax - The latest developments in Tunisia serve to refute the opinion that all Arab revolutions inevitably lead to theocracies, Mikhail Margelov, the Russian president's envoy for cooperation with African countries, told Interfax on Thursday.

"The events in Egypt and Tunisia refute the expert community's opinion that modern revolutions in the Arab world invariably result in theocracies. The world is changing. So is the Arab world," Margelov, who is also a member of the Federation Council, the upper chamber of Russia's parliament, said.

It was in Tunisia where the Arab Spring began, he said.

It was followed by a revolution in Egypt, where, however, the Muslim Brotherhood was recently deposed from power, Margelov said.

And today those who intiated the Arab Spring in Tunisia demand the resignation of the Ennahda Islamist party's government, he said.

The Islamists who came to power in Tunisia as a result of the revolution, which was totally uncharacteristic of this country, are about to lose power there now, he said.

In Egypt, civil forces were the first to protest against the Islamists' government, which was subsequently overthrown by the Armed Forces, Margelov said.

"The Army keeps suppressing supporters of ousted President Mursi and it is highly unlikely that the return of these theocrats to power will be permitted," he said.

Tunisia is currently witnessing only civilian protests against Ennahda, but the Armed Forces do not much like this Islamist regime either, he said.

"That is why it is difficult to predict how upcoming negotiations between the ruling Islamists and the Tunisian opposition will end. In any case, the Egyptian scenario is not ruled out there either," Margelov said.