President Saied has 10 days to try to build a coalition that can command a majority in parliament.
During his era, Ben Ali's photograph was displayed in every shop, school and government office from the beach resorts of the Mediterranean coast to the impoverished villages and mining towns of Tunisia's hilly interior.
Sunday's election may push parties to stake out harder positions in the October parliamentary elections against sharing power with ideological opponents.
Nothing is certain in Tunisia's presidential election, only the second since the 'Arab Spring'.
The late president slipped away without leaving a strong political legacy, with his allies seemingly the first to move on and his party fragmented into five.
Tunisian Prime Minister Youssef Chahed's supporters set up a new political party to compete for the next presidential and parliamentary elections in late 2019. Could it be a game changer?
In a Muslim-majority country, a Jewish sewing machine repairer Simon Slama is aiming for victory as he stands for a Muslim party. He says all must come together to build the Tunisia of tomorrow.
Over 600 protesters were arrested overnight even as the army were dispatched to several cities to stop violent demonstrations over price hikes, taxes and unemployment.
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