Extracts from the joint press briefing by José Manuel BARROSO, President of the EC and Hamadi JEBALI, Tunisian Prime Minister following their meeting in the European Commission
Première transmission: 02/10/2012
Brussels, Belgium - EC/Berlaymont
Fin de production: 02/10/2012
The European Commission and Tunisia signed two financing agreements during Tunisian PM Hamadi Jebali's visit to Brussels today, one related to support the reduction of social inequalities and improving health care services in disadvantaged regions in Tunisia, and the other one regarding judicial reforms in the country.
Support for health is a priority in the EU's cooperation with Tunisia. However, this assistance takes a special dimension in the context of the democratic transition in the country: the support to basic services is a key element to regional development and to the poorest populations whose needs are acute in the country.
Talking to journalists afterwards, President Barroso said he was reassured by Tunisian commitment to a democratic transition in the country.
Only the original language version is authentic and it prevails in the event of its differing from the translated versions.
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||SOUNDBITE (French) by José Manuel Barroso, President of the EC, saying that he assured all Tunisians, as he did today with Tunisian Head of Government, that the European commitment towards a democratic Tunisia remains intact. Political situation in Tunisia has been raised today during bilateral talks, including the new Constitution and the preparation of general elections, as well as ongoing reforms. Saying he welcomed the guarantees given by the new government of the irreversibility of the democratic transition in the country, as well as the commitment of the new authorities to fundamental rights and freedoms for all Tunisians.
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||SOUNDBITE (French) by José Manuel Barroso saying that they also discussed the recent attacks on US diplomatic representations. Saying that he was encouraged by the commitment of Tunisian PM who confirmed that the positions of a minority of extremists should not be associated to the opinion of a large majority of Tunisians. Saying that tolerance should be the answer to regrettable provocations.
||SOUNDBITE (Tunisian) by Hamadi Jebali, Tunisian Prime Minister, saying that he reassured the President of the European Commission that Tunisia is keen to go further in the path of partnership with the EU, having common values, interests and principles. The EU understands very well the challenges that Tunisia is facing right now. The EU is ready to extend its support to Tunisia.
||SOUNDBITE (Tunisian) by Hamadi Jebali saying that he hopes that the support from this partnership will face the exceptional challenges of Tunisia. This is what the country needs in order to make its democratic transition a success.