Tunisia’s Ben Ali Sentenced to Life for Protester Killings

A Tunisian military court sentenced former President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali in absentia to life in prison for his role in the deaths of protesters in several towns during last year’s uprising that pushed him from power.

The ruling handed down late yesterday was the second in the same day by a military court against Ben Ali, the official TAP news agency reported. Earlier, another military court sentenced him to 20 years in prison for inciting violence that led to the death of four protesters in the town of Ouardanine. The demonstrators were trying to stop his nephew from leaving the country.

Ben Ali and his wife fled the country in mid-January 2011 and are living in Saudi Arabia. Ben Ali has also been convicted in civilian courts in other cases. The latest sentence is the most severe to be handed down against him.

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