Tunisia Wants Its Gold Back, Issues International Arrest Warrant For Runaway President Ben Ali

Even as the situation in Tunisia continues deteriorating broadly, the country realizes that it needs its shiny assets back, and needs them fast, regardless of edibility or recent market corrections. As such it has just issued an international arrest warrant for deposed president Ben Ali. From the BBC: "Mr Chebbi said Mr Ben Ali should be tried for property theft and transferring foreign currency." We can't repeat enough: any dictatorial or Hewlett Packardian banana republic should make sure all of its gold is secure. In fact, since we are positive all of the gold, pardon, tungsten held at Ft. Knox is right there, it may be a good idea to put tracker beacons in the fake material. We are confident that sooner or later it will lead the broader population to not only the Textron vehicle used for one way transit, but to which non-extradition countries will soon be hosting our very own versions of the Tunisian President.

From the BBC:

Tunisia has issued an international arrest warrant for ousted President Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali and his family, the nation's justice minister has said.

Lazhar Karoui Chebbi said Tunisia had asked Interpol to detain Mr Ben Ali, who fled to Saudi Arabia earlier this month amid mass street protests.

Mr Chebbi said Mr Ben Ali should be tried for property theft and transferring foreign currency.

He was speaking as anti-government protests continued in the country.

In the capital Tunis, some of the protesters had apparently tried to breach barricades around the main government compound, and police responded by firing tear gas.
'Cleaning up'

Mr Chebbi said Mr Ben Ali and his family members were being being sought for "illegal acquisition" of assets and "illicit transfers of funds abroad.

The minister added that seven family members were currently in custody, but several more had fled abroad.

In a separate development, protesters in Tunis clashed with police outside the government building.

The demonstrators - mainly young men and teenagers - demanded the resignation of the interim government led by Prime Minister Mohammed Ghannouchi,.

The protesters said the cabinet was full of Mr Ben Ali's former allies, including Mr Ghannouchi.

"We have only one demand: for the government to fall. They all have to go. Ghannouchi should go first," protester Bassem El Barouni was quoted as saying by the AFP news agency.

Hamid El Gribi, another protester, said: "We have to clean up the rest of the old government."

Mr Ghannouchi has promised elections within six months, saying he will quit "in the shortest possible timeframe".