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Tunisian PM to Step Down

Tunisia's Prime Minister Ali Larayedh has confirmed he will resign Thursday in accordance with a plan to end months of political deadlock and allowing a caretaker government to oversee this year's elections.

Mr. Larayedh said on national television Thursday that he will present a resignation letter to the country's president, Moncef Marzouki, later in the day. A caretaker prime minister, Mehdi Jomaa, is expected to take his place. Tunisia's Constitutional Assembly has just finished selecting a High Electoral Commission to oversee national elections later this year.

Events in Tunisia sparked the Arab Spring democracy movement in 2011 that led to revolts in Egypt and Libya, but Tunisia's path since the overthrow of dictator Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali has been fraught with divisions over the role of Islam in the nation's governance and the problem of hardline Islamist factions.

Incoming political leaders in Tunisia are also expected to grapple with a faltering economy, high cost of living, and a lack of job opportunities.

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