Belgian FM pledges to inform European partners of security improvement in Tunisia.

Bilateral cooperation between Tunisia and Belgium, means to develop them, the situation in Libya and issues of mutual interest, were the focus of the talk on Wednesday in Tunis between Foreign Minister Khemaies Jhinaoui and his Belgian counterpart Didier Reynders.

In a press statement at the end of the talk, Jhinaoui commended Belgium’s decision to partially lift the travel restrictions for Tunisia.

He said he had asked his Belgian counterpart to reconvert Tunisian debt into concrete projects, reminding that 160 Belgian companies are already established in Tunisia. Belgium is the sixth partner of Tunisia, he added.

The minister also indicated that the meeting with his Belgian counterpart also focused on relations between Tunisia and the Benelux countries (Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg) and between Tunisia and the European Union (EU) countries as well as the means to promote them at the economic, security and political levels, the EU being the first partner of Tunisia.

“We also talked about the initiative of President Béji Caïd Essebsi to resolve the Libyan crisis and means to help achieve it,” he added.

For his part, Didier Reynders paid tribute to the “democratic process” in Tunisia, particularly in a terrorism context.

“It is difficult to achieve a balance between security and respect for individual rights,” he said.

Belgium is determined to support the ongoing democratic process, particularly in the field of security, namely securing of ports, airports and hotels, he emphasised.

Reynders also pledged to inform the European partners of the security improvement in Tunisia.

The issue of migration and the shared concern about the situation in Libya were also at the centre of the meeting, said the Belgian Minister.

The Belgian Foreign Minister is on an official visit to Tunisia (March 1- 2).


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