Tunisia’s peaceful, though difficult, transition since the Arab Spring and its centrality in U.S.-supported efforts to stem terrorism punctuate its role as a major non-NATO ally of the United States. U.S. President Donald Trump “praised Tunisia’s stability and security,” in a Feb. 17 phone call with Tunisian President Beji Caid Essebsi, according to a White House statement. Tunisian Foreign Minister Khemaies Jhinaoui discussed the U.S. partnership and Tunisia’s own development and influence in the region, in a discussion at the U.S. Institute of Peace on Tuesday, March 14. Continue the conversation on Twitter with #USIPTunisia.
The 2015 Nobel Peace Prize awarded to the Tunisian Dialogue Quartet that helped navigate a peaceful political transition after the post-2011 political crisis and occasional flares of violence, illustrated the country’s achievements, especially in a challenging regional environment. Tunisia adopted a new constitution in 2014 that is noted for embracing values of human rights, inclusive politics and reforms in pivotal areas such as the security forces.
Still, the country is fighting recruitment efforts by violent extremist groups and has suffered terror attacks within its own borders. The war in neighboring Libya worsens regional security; Tunisia is involved in a fragile peace process to resolve that conflict. At the same time, Tunisia is undertaking deep reforms to revive its economy and accelerate development.
Minister Jhinaoui discussed how Tunisia is addressing domestic, regional and international challenges and how it sees its partnership with the U.S. under the Trump administration.
Mr. Khemaies Jhinaoui
Minister of Foreign Affairs, Republic of Tunisia
Dr. Michael Yaffe, Opening Remarks
Vice President, Center for Middle East and Africa, United States Institute of Peace
Ambassador William Taylor, Moderator
Executive Vice President, United States Institute of Peace