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The Arab Spring is becoming an Islamist takeover

ICC Note:

Last week’s elections in Tunisia resulted in the victory of the Islamist Ennahda party. If the outcome of Tunisia’s elections exemplify who will rise to power after elections in other Middle Eastern countries – mainly Egypt – than the safety for Christians in the future Middle East appears bleak.

By Con Coughlin

10/25/2011 Middle East (The Telegraph) – Much as I sympathise with the desire of millions of young Arabs to free themselves from the tyranny of autocratic government, I'm afraid I'm finding it hard to draw any positive conclusions from the results of last weekend's elections in Tunisia, where the Islamist Ennahda party has emerged as the main winner.

Ennahda was outlawed during the regime of President Zine El Abedine Ben Ali on the grounds that it was planning an Islamist takeover of the country and its leader, Rachid Gannouchi was – as is the custom – granted political asylum in Britain, where he lived for 22 years. Ennahda, for its part, claims it was simply the victim of Ben Ali's paranoia. But many people remain very wary of Mr Gannouchi since his triumphant return to Tunis last January, which explains why his opponents shouted "terrorist" when he went to vote.

The same goes for neighbouring Libya, where Nato has just spent the past eight months helping the rebels to overthrow Col Gaddafi's regime. No doubt mssrs Cameron and Sarkozy were hoping to replace Gaddafi with a pro-Western regime with whom they could negotiate lots of lucrative oil contracts. Instead they find that, when the interim government formally proclaimed the country's liberation in Benghazi on Sunday night, the victors of Libya's nasty civil war are now planning to set up a new government based on the strict interpretation of Sharia law.

[Full Story]

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