European External Action Service sends a senior officials’ mission to Tunisia
On behalf of the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy/Vice-President of the European Commission Catherine Ashton, a mission at the level of EEAS senior officials has been sent to Tunisia yesterday, on January 26th.
The mission, led by the EEAS Managing Director for the Middle East and Southern Neighbourhood, Hugues Mingarelli, will meet with the transitional authorities as well as with representatives of political forces, civil society and trade unions.
In particular, they plan to hold discussions with the committees set up to work on political and constitutional reform, the investigation into corruption and fraud and the examination of abuses in the past few weeks by police and other public authorities. Meetings are also expected to take place with representatives of former opposition political parties and NGOs.
The EU is willing to provide its political, legal, technical and material support to the democratic transition in Tunisia. This includes support to the preparation of the elections, to the work of the commissions appointed by the government on the political transition, investigation on corruption and on the violence during the demonstrations.
Furthermore, the EU, in the framework of the European Neighbourhood Policy, envisages adapting its strategy and assistance regarding Tunisia, in order to take into account the new context and the legitimate aspirations of the Tunisian people.
Background. Mass protests against Tunisia’s former president Zine El Abidine Ben Ali and his party started on December 17th, when an unemployed Mohamed Bouazizi burnt himself in one of Tunisia’s rural towns. On January 14th Ben Ali, who governed the country for 23 years, left Tunisia.
Today the country is ruled by an interim “government of unity”, also involving former opposition politicians. It is expected that the new elections, due in mid-year, will lead to an establishment of a new legitimate administration. Read moreBack to