Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali, the former ruler of Tunisia is seriously ill in a hospital in Saudi Arabia, where he fled to exile, according to various media reports.
According to Agence France Presse, Ben Ali, who was deposed last month after more than two decades in power, has suffered a debilitating stroke and is “in a coma” in Jeddah.
Ben Ali was reportedly placed in a hospital under a false name, due to security considerations.
An unnamed friend of the Ben Ali family reportedly said he had a stroke, and his condition is serious.
The Tunisian newspaper Le Quotidien also reported that Ben Ali had suffered a stroke.
A source in Saudi Arabia was quoted by Reuters as saying that Ben Ali was in a grave condition.
France’s Le Monde has also reported that the former strongman is seriously ill.
Tunisia now has an interim government in place and is expecting to conduct national elections. The government refused to confirm or deny the state of Ben Ali’s health.