TUNIS, Feb. 10 (Xinhua) -- The Tunisian Congress for the Republic (CPR) party decided to withdraw from the Islamist Ennahdha-led coalition in response to its handling of the country' s recent crisis trigged by the assassination of an opposition leader, state-run TAP news agency reported Sunday.
Leader of the CPR, Chokri Yacoub, was quoted by TAP as saying that his party, which Tunisian President Moncef Marzouki hails from, will hold a press conference on Monday to officially announce the decision.
The five CPR members within the government, including three ministers and two secretaries of state, will continue to shoulder their responsibilities to avoid any administrative vacuum, Yacoub noted.
The CPR, one of Tunisia's leading coalition parties in the government, has previously threatened to leave the current government, if an agreement among the three parties composing the governmental coalition, including Ennahdha and Ettakatol, is not reached.
Tunisian Prime minister Hamadi Jebali on Wednesday announced his plan to form a new government of technocrats until elections take place after the assassination of Belaid, which sparked widespread protests in the North African country.
On Saturday, Jebali said that he would appoint a new cabinet composed of independent technocrats, sometime "in the middle of next week."
The move threatens to plunge the country into a deepening political crisis after the assassination of Chokri Belaid, a leading secular opposition figure, on Wednesday.
The assassination of Belaid, leader of the Popular Front and an outspoken critic, sparked angry protests in Tunis and the southern town of Sidi Bouzid.
Hours after news about Belaid's death, thousands of Tunisians flocked to the capital's main avenue to denounce the politically- motivated assassination and demand the departure of the current government. Police used tear gas to disperse them.
No one has yet claimed responsibility for the killing.
The interior ministry on Wednesday said a Tunisian policeman was killed in the clashes in the capital Tunis, adding that the protesters also ransacked some stores.
The killing of Belaid, whose burial on Friday was attended by hundreds of thousands of people, led to a division in Ennahdha's party between moderate politicians led by Jebali and a more radical figure led by the party's leader, Rached Ghannouchi.
It also prompted Tunisia's opposition parties to ask for a long- awaited government reshuffle by the Ennahdha government.