Essebsi’s body moved to presidential palace in Tunis ahead funeral


The body of Tunisian President, Beji Essebsi, was on Friday transferred from a military hospital to the presidential palace in Tunis, as the country prepares for his funeral.
Essebsi, who battled a severe health crisis last month, was rushed to a military hospital late on July 24 after suffering a “sudden bout of illness” due to “food poisoning,” the president’s son, Hafedh Caid Essebsi, said.
He passed away at the age of 92 years old on the morning of the 62nd anniversary of the republic, which for the first time, will not be celebrated with an official ceremony as the nation mourns.
Crowds gathered in front of the hospital to pay their respects as the body was transferred in a military vehicle.
The body will be buried on Saturday in an event that is expected to be attended by heads of states.
Essebsi took office in 2014 as Tunisia’s first democratically-elected president.
Parliament Speaker, Mohamed Ennaceur, has been sworn in as interim president.
The 2014 constitution states that the head of the parliament can take office for a maximum period of 90 days.
The election commission has announced that the November presidential polls will be held on September 15.
The upcoming presidential elections will be Tunisia’s third after the 2011 uprising that toppled long-time dictator Ben Ali.
Parliamentary elections are scheduled to be held in October.


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