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Tunisians: Wife of president stole bank gold

Jan 20, 2011 7:28:00 AM - thestate.com
A French government minister said the Tunisian central bank director, Taoufik Baccar, has resigned following widespread rumors that the president's wife fled the country with a huge stash of gold.

The Tunisian army fired warning shots in the capital Thursday as demonstrators marched toward the headquarters of the longtime ruling party, and government ministers quit the party in a desperate attempt to keep their jobs.

Demonstrators have criticized the country's new unity government announced Monday for being mostly made up of old guard politicians from the ruling party. They are seeking the disbanding of the RCD party, founded by ousted President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, who fled to Saudi Arabia on Friday after 23 years in power.

Tunisia's Central Bank took control of Banque Zitouna, a bank founded by a son-in-law of Ben Ali, to protect its deposits.

Outside the gates of the party headquarters in Tunis, the army fired about 10 rounds into the air, scattering some protesters in the noisy but peaceful crowd. Others remained, chanting, "Down with the RCD!"

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