Tunisian President Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali appointed a new youth minister on Wednesday in a partial reshuffle after violent protests by unemployed youths, official media said. In addition to the Youth and Sport portfolio, new ministers were appointed for trade and handicrafts, religious affairs and communication, the official TAP news agency reported.
It was the second time the Tunisian leader had reshuffled his cabinet this year. Abdelhamid Salama was appointed Youth and Sports Minister to replace Samir Labidi, who was appointed Communication Minister.
According to TAP, Ben Ali has instructed the government to work with the private sector to put in place "an emergency programme" to create jobs and provide "means of subsistence" for youths who have been out of work for long periods. "Regional development is to become a permanent topic on the agenda of the council of ministers," TAP quoted him as saying.