Tunisia sees 26 candidates for lively presidential election

FILE - In this Sept. 4, 2019 file photo, a woman walks past a wall of campaign posters in Tunis. Twenty-six candidates are running for president of Tu

FILE - In this Sept. 4, 2019 file photo, a woman walks past a wall of campaign posters in Tunis. Twenty-six candidates are running for president of Tu

Supporters of Tunisian presidential candidate Selma Elloumi, founder of the Al Amal (Hope) party; distribute leaflets in the streets of Tunis, Thursda

Supporters of Tunisian presidential candidate Selma Elloumi, founder of the Al Amal (Hope) party; distribute leaflets in the streets of Tunis, Thursda

A supporter of Tunisian presidential candidate Selma Elloumi, founder of the Al Amal (Hope) party distributes a campaign cap in the streets of Tunis,

A supporter of Tunisian presidential candidate Selma Elloumi, founder of the Al Amal (Hope) party distributes a campaign cap in the streets of Tunis,

A supporter of Tunisian presidential candidate Selma Elloumi, founder of the Al Amal (Hope) party, distributes leaflets in the streets of Tunis, Thurs

A supporter of Tunisian presidential candidate Selma Elloumi, founder of the Al Amal (Hope) party, distributes leaflets in the streets of Tunis, Thurs

People read campaign leaflets for Tunisian presidential candidate Selma Elloumi, founder of the Al Amal (Hope) party, in a street of Tunis, Thursday S

People read campaign leaflets for Tunisian presidential candidate Selma Elloumi, founder of the Al Amal (Hope) party, in a street of Tunis, Thursday S

A supporter of Tunisian presidential candidate Selma Elloumi, founder of the Al Amal (Hope) party, distributes campaign leaflets in a street of Tunis,

A supporter of Tunisian presidential candidate Selma Elloumi, founder of the Al Amal (Hope) party, distributes campaign leaflets in a street of Tunis,

FILE - In this Sept. 4, 2019 file photo, people walk past a campaign poster showing the jailed owner of the Tunisian private channel Nessma TV, Nabil

FILE - In this Sept. 4, 2019 file photo, people walk past a campaign poster showing the jailed owner of the Tunisian private channel Nessma TV, Nabil

Supporters, left, of Tunisian presidential candidate Selma Elloumi, founder of the Al Amal (Hope) party, distribute leaflets in a street of Tunis, Thu

Supporters, left, of Tunisian presidential candidate Selma Elloumi, founder of the Al Amal (Hope) party, distribute leaflets in a street of Tunis, Thu

FILE - In this Sept. 9, 2019 file photo, Vice President of the Islamist party Ennahda and candidate for the upcoming presidential elections Abdelfatta

FILE - In this Sept. 9, 2019 file photo, Vice President of the Islamist party Ennahda and candidate for the upcoming presidential elections Abdelfatta

FILE - This Sept. 10, 2019 file photo, shows an electoral poster for presidential candidate Moncef Marzouki, a former human rights activist who was Tu

FILE - This Sept. 10, 2019 file photo, shows an electoral poster for presidential candidate Moncef Marzouki, a former human rights activist who was Tu

FILE - In this Friday Aug. 2, 2019 file photo, President of the Free Destourian Party (PDL) Abir Moussi submits her candidacy for the upcoming preside

FILE - In this Friday Aug. 2, 2019 file photo, President of the Free Destourian Party (PDL) Abir Moussi submits her candidacy for the upcoming preside

FILE - In this Aug. 30, 2019 file photo, Vice President of the Islamist party Ennahda and candidate for the upcoming presidential election Abdelfattah

FILE - In this Aug. 30, 2019 file photo, Vice President of the Islamist party Ennahda and candidate for the upcoming presidential election Abdelfattah

FILE - In this Aug. 9, 2019 file photo, Tunisian Prime Minister Youssef Chahed arrives to submit his candidacy for the upcoming presidential elections

FILE - In this Aug. 9, 2019 file photo, Tunisian Prime Minister Youssef Chahed arrives to submit his candidacy for the upcoming presidential elections

FILE - In this Aug. 8, 2019 file photo, LGBT activist Mounir Baatour holds a rainbow flag in Tunis, Tunisia, after submitting his candidacy for the up

FILE - In this Aug. 8, 2019 file photo, LGBT activist Mounir Baatour holds a rainbow flag in Tunis, Tunisia, after submitting his candidacy for the up

TUNIS, Tunisia (AP) — Tunisia is holding a presidential election this weekend and among the 26 contenders are a jailed media tycoon, two prime ministers and a little-known Islamist with a big voter base.

The first-round election Sunday is seen as key to securing the North African nation's young democracy as it struggles with economic troubles and Islamic extremism.

Accusations of smear campaigns and corruption have been tossed around ahead of the election, which is being held to replace Tunisia's democratically elected leader, who died in office in July.

With so many candidates, there's no clear front-runner, although Prime Minister Youssef Chahed, jailed media magnate Nabil Karoui and Abdelfattah Mourou of the moderate Islamist party Ennahdha are getting attention.

It's only the second democratic presidential election that Tunisia has held since its "jasmine revolution" in 2011 unleashed the Arab Spring protests.