BEIRUT

Middle East

Tunisia imam dies of wounds after attack on police

Tunisian members of different security services demonstrate in front of the interior ministry offices in Tunis on November 1, 2012, to protest against violence they say they have been victim of, such as from Salafist movements, and to call for more equipment and training to ensure their safety. AFP PHOTO/FETHI BELAID

TUNIS: Tunisian imam who was wounded when Islamists attacked police this week died of his wounds on Thursday, a security official said, bringing to two the death toll from the clashes.

Khaled Karaoui, imam of the Ennour mosque in the Tunis suburb of Manouba, died in hospital before dawn, said local national guard commander Nizar Badis.

His funeral is set to be held in on Thursday afternoon.

Karaoui was among militants who attacked two national guard posts in Manouba after police arrested a Salafist suspected of assaulting the head of the area's public security brigade.

During the clashes, one of the attackers was killed and two policemen wounded.

Since the Tunisian revolution that ousted former president Zine El Abidine Ben Ali in January 2011, radical Islamists have carried out a number of attacks, including against security forces and on cultural events.

The opposition accuses the government, led by Islamist party Ennahda, of failing to rein in violence by Salafists, a hardline branch of Sunni Islam.

But the authorities have vowed to crack down on Islamist violence in the wake of a Salafist-led attack on the US embassy in September in which four assailants were killed.

On Wednesday, President Moncef Marzouki extended the country's state of emergency through January, continuing special intervention powers for the police and army after the recent attacks.

 

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