TUNIS (AFP) – President Moncef Marzouki had his hand kissed during a visit to a market but the presidency’s Facebook site deleted the clip which had gone viral, saying it was against the tenets of post-uprising Tunisia.
A visibly upset Marzouki withdrew his hand after two merchants at a fruit and vegetable market south of Tunis kissed it when he proferred it to them for a handshake.
“We have decided to withdraw the clip … we are trying to install a new relationship between the government and citizens. A relationship based on dignity, a gain from the revolution,” the presidency facebook site said.
Hand-kissing was popular during the regime of longtime dictator Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, toppled last year in the first of the series of Arab Spring revolutions.
They were aired on television regularly to the irritation of several viewers to demonstrate the despised Ben Ali’s popularity.