Italy’s top leaders in Tunisia to shore up ties, security
TUNIS, Tunisia (AP) — Italy’s chief of government and an array of top ministers are visiting Tunisia, a leading strategic and economic partner whose shared concerns include migration and the North African country’s unstable neighbor, Libya.
Present for Tuesday’s inter-governmental summit were Premier Giuseppe Conte, Deputy Premier Luigi Di Maio and anti-migrant Interior Minister Matteo Salvini, plus the defense and foreign ministers, reflecting the importance Italy places on its ties with Tunisia.
After taking office last May, Conte made Tunisia his first stop south of the Mediterranean in November. Accords then included help in controlling the more than 400-kilometer (250-mile) Libyan-Tunisian border and toward development of Tunisian’s interior where jobless youths become candidates for migration.
The 2011 Tunisian revolution triggered the Arab Spring, but the budding democracy is plagued with economic and security problems.