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Tunisia scrambles to find new PM, end political limbo

Tunisia was scrambling to find a replacement prime minister on Thursday and pull itself out of a major political crisis two days after Hamadi Jebali quit after failing to form a cabinet of technocrats. The consultative council of Ennahda was to meet later to choose a successor to Jebali, the ruling Islamist party's number two, who ruled himself out following suggestions he might be reappointed premier.

Tunisia scrambles to find new PM, end political limbo

Tunisia was scrambling to find a replacement prime minister on Thursday and pull itself out of a major political crisis two days after Hamadi Jebali quit after failing to form a cabinet of technocrats. The consultative council of Ennahda was to meet later to choose a successor to Jebali, the ruling Islamist party's number two, who ruled himself out following suggestions that he might be reappointed premier.

UPDATE 5-Tunisia's Islamist Ennahda to pick hardliner for PM

* Ennahda says it will name next prime minister this week * Jebali resigned after plan for technocrat cabinet failed * Ennahda to choose PM from hardline wing-party official (Adds Jebali's speech apologising to people) By Tarek Amara TUNIS, Feb 21 (Reuters) - Tunisia's main Islamist Ennahda party will pick a hardliner to replace moderate outgoing Prime Minister Hamadi Jebali after he declined to head the next government, a party official said on Thursday.

Tunisia's Ennahda meets to decide PM candidate

The consultative council of Ennahda, Tunisia's ruling Islamist party, was meeting Thursday to choose a successor to outgoing premier Hamadi Jebali, who quit after failing to form a new government. Jebali, who is Ennahda's number two, resigned on Tuesday after his plan to form a technocrat cabinet, announced in the wake of public outrage over the February 6 murder of leftist politician Chokri Belaid, was rejected by his own party.

Tunisia in political limbo as no new PM in sight

Tunisia was in political limbo on Wednesday as President Moncef Marzouki suffered setbacks in his bid to replace Prime Minister Hamadi Jebali, who quit after failing in his plan to form a non-partisan cabinet. Talks between Marzouki and Rached Ghannouchi, head of Islamist Ennahda party, ended inconclusively, dashing hopes of a soon end to Tunisia's deepest political crisis since the revolt that ousted Zine El Abidine Ben Ali two years ago.

UPDATE 2-Tunisia seeks new premier to escape political crisis

* Secular president holds talks with Islamist party chief * Jebali resigned after plan for technocrat cabinet failed * IMF talks on hold until political impasse resolved By Tarek Amara TUNIS, Feb 20 (Reuters) - Tunisian leaders began the search for a new prime minister on Wednesday to try to lead the North African nation out of its gravest political crisis since an uprising that inspired a wave of Arab revolts two years ago.

Tunisia president holds crisis talks over new PM

President Moncef Marzouki was holding urgent talks on Wednesday with political leaders in a bid to steer Tunisia out of a weeks-long crisis exacerbated by the resignation of Prime Minister Hamadi Jebali. Marzouki was meeting with the leader of the Islamist ruling Ennahda party, Rached Ghannouchi, followed later with Maya Jribi of the opposition Republican party, his office said.

Tunisia seeks new prime minister to escape political crisis

* Secular president starts consultations with parties * Jebali resigned after plan for technocrat cabinet failed * IMF talks on hold until political crisis resolved By Tarek Amara TUNIS, Feb 20 (Reuters) - Tunisian leaders began the search for a new prime minister on Wednesday to try to lead the North African nation out of its gravest political crisis since an uprising that inspired a wave of Arab revolts two years ago.

Tunisia PM quits office, deepening crisis

Tunisia's Prime Minister Hamadi Jebali resigned on Tuesday after failing to form a non-partisan government to end a political crisis exacerbated by the assassination of a senior opposition figure. Jebali, who had warned of chaos if his plan fell through, made a last-ditch effort to push for "another solution" to the long-running crisis in a meeting with President Moncef Marzouki. "I promised and assured that, in the event that my initiative failed, I would resign as head of the government, and that is what I have done," Jebali said on television.

Tunisia's Hamadi Jebali: face of moderate Islam

Tunisia's Prime Minister Hamadi Jebali, who quit on Tuesday after failing in his efforts to form a government of technocrats, emerged from jail under an autocratic regime as a man of compromise. The assassination on February 6 of secular opposition figure Chokri Belaid pushed Jebali, the Ennahda party's number two, into a showdown with party hardliners who rally around their chief, Rached Ghannouchi.
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