The last Bey
(1943-1956), and the first head of state
of modern independent Tunisia
(1956-1957). A member of the Husseinid
Dynasty, founded by the Hussein
who became bey of Tunis under the Turks in 1705, Muhammad VIII was the son of Bey Muhammad VI
al-Habib (1922-1929), who had been succeeded by his cousin and then another distant relative, Muhammad VII
al-Munsif. Muhammad VIII deposed Muhammad VII in 1943.
He became nominal ruler of the Kingdom of Tunisia when France granted full independence to Tunisia on 29 March 1956, but real power lay with prime minister Habib Bourguiba, who on 25 July 1957 abolished the monarchy and made himself president. Bey Muhammad VIII al-Amin died in 1962.
Tunisia - Habib Bourguiba >