Tunisian election officials prepare their work at a vote counting center following the country's first parliamentary election since the 2011 revolution in the capital Tunis on October 27, 2014. AFP PHOTO / FETHI BELAID
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Tunisia's Ennahda party, the first Islamist movement to secure power after the 2011 "Arab Spring" revolts, conceded defeat on Monday in elections that are set to make its main secular rival the strongest force in parliament."We have accepted this result, and congratulate the winner Nidaa Tounes," the official, Lotfi Zitoun, told Reuters. However, he repeated the party's call for a new coalition including Ennahda. Earlier, a party source said preliminary tallies showed the secular party had won 80 seats in the 217-member assembly, ahead of 67 secured by Ennahda. Led by Beji Caid Essebsi, a former parliament speaker under Ben Ali, Nidaa Tounes emerged in 2012 as a political force by rallying opposition to the first Ennahda-led government when Islamists won around 40 percent of seats in the first assembly.
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