EU Foreign Ministers Should Take Effective Measures to Address the Rapidly Growing Human Rights Crisis in Tunisia

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Mr Josep Borrell Fontelles, EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy/ Vice-President

The 20th of March 2023 Foreign Affairs Council’s exchange of views on the situation in Tunisia will take place amid an unprecedented campaign to crush dissent and roll back human rights and freedoms Tunisians have worked hard to secure since the country’s 2011 revolution. We are deeply concerned, in particular, about the undermining of judicial independence, the arrests of critics and political opponents, the military trials of civilians, and the ongoing crackdown on freedom of expression and threats to civil society.

We welcome the forthcoming Foreign Affairs Council’s discussion and call upon the EU and its Member States to use it as an opportunity to clearly express their concern over the further deterioration of the human rights situation in the country, to urge the Tunisian government to immediately halt and reverse its crackdown on fundamental human rights and freedoms, and to ensure that EU and its Member States’ cooperation with Tunisia does not lead to human rights violations.