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In March 2018, Essebsi convened an expert committee consisting of 18 members of the organizations that signed the Carthage Agreement.In response, Essebsi suspended negotiations, demanded Chahed's resignation and convened a special session among the main actors o`f the Second Carthage Agreement culminating in his Sept. 24 interview, which signaled an official end to the politics of consensus.Nidaa Tounes is anxious that internal political pressures will undermine the party, especially as Essebsi has increasingly intervened in party politics over the past couple of years and particularly in the past few months.Strategically, Essebsi's persistent interference in party politics owes to his status as a founding father of Nidaa Tounes and as one of the key architects of the consensus policy. Although he had nominated Youssef Chahed as head of government, he has instead been backing Hafedh Caid Essebsi, his own son and the party's current leader even though representative opinion polls show that Chahed is one of the most popular politicians in the country, in stark contrast to the president's exceedingly unpopular son.Compared to Nidaa Tounes, Ennahda insists maintaining the national unity policy and a stable government.This is because Essebsi and Nidaa Tounes, the opponents of the present policy, want to separate the symbolism of "national unity" from formal consensus in order to develop and implement their own policies.
Putting Tunisia’s Carthage Agreement under scrutiny
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