Tunisia’s Central Bank Denies Gold ‘Heist’ by Ben Ali’s Wife
Posted on Jan 17, 2011
A spokesman for Tunisia’s central bank denies a Le Monde report that the wife of ousted Tunisian President Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali left the country with almost $60 million worth of Tunisia’s gold reserves.
Citing French security sources, Le Monde reported that Leila Trabelsi went to the bank in December, the month when the protests against her husband’s government began.
It said the bank’s governor refused her demand and asked for a written request for the gold, said to be worth 45m euros (£38m). It said the president initially refused to make such an order before giving in to his wife.
The paper said she then left Tunisia before returning to the country, and that the gold bars were reportedly taken to Switzerland.
Flickr / Georgio Monteforti (CC-BY)