World Bulletin / News Desk
Thousands of protesters gathered in Sidi Bouzid, cradle of the Arab Spring uprisings, after the killing of opposition figure Shokri Belaid, who was shot dead outside his home.
"More than four thousand are protesting now, burning tyres and throwing stones at the police," Mehdi Horchani, a Sidi Bouzid resident, told Reuters. "There is great anger".
Thousands were also protesting in Tunis after Shokri Belaid was killed outside his home there on Wednesday.
The prime minister condemned the killing as a political assassination and a strike against the "Arab Spring" revolution.
Prime Minister Hamadi Jebali said the identity of the killer of Shokri Belaid was unknown.
President Moncef Marzouki cut short a visit to France and cancelled a visit to Egypt scheduled for Thursday after the killing.
"The murder of Belaid is a political assassination and the assassination of the Tunisian revolution. By killing him they wanted to silence his voice," said Jebali, who heads the government led by the Ennahda party, which won Tunisia's first post-Arab Spring election in 2011.
Belaid, who died in hospital after being shot in the capital Tunis, was a leading member of the opposition Popular Front party.
"Shokri Belaid was killed today by four bullets to the head and chest ... doctors told us that he has died. This is a sad day for Tunisia," Ziad Lakhader, a leader of the Popular Front, told Reuters. Other party sources confirmed his death.
The president was in France for a meeting of the European Parliament and was due to have gone to Egypt to attend an Islamic summit.Last Mod: 06 Şubat 2013, 15:38