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Tunisian Authories Continue Hunt For Museum Attackers; What Makes Tunisia Ripe Ground For Extremism?; Fighting Erupts Between Military, Houthi Rebels In Aden. Aired 11-12:00P ET
Aired March 19, 2015 - 11:00:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[11:00:17] BECKY ANDERSON, HOST: A shock to the system and a sobering reminder that nowhere is immune to a spreading menace. Tunisia for so long
the poster child of the Arab Spring is today facing up to a reality the rest of the region is all too familiar with.
Well, this hour we'll examine how this vulnerable nation can deal with a threat frequently buried or bred inside its own borders. We'll look at a
fragile economy propped up by tourism and industry now at risk after the killing of 20 visitors. And we'll investigate what's driving young
Tunisians to the sort of extremism seen in Wednesday's attack.
ANNOUNCER: Live from CNN Abu Dhabi, this is Connect the World with Becky Anderson.
ANDERSON: A very good evening from the UAE. It is 7:00 here.
Straight to our top story, the investigation into what was that daring daylight attack on Tunisia's national museum.
You are looking at some of the latest pictures from the scene. The death toll now has climbed to at least 23 people, that's what the country's
health minister says.
Meanwhile, nine people have been arrested in connection with the attack.
The Tunisian President's office says four of those are suspected of being directly linked to the armed rampage.
Well, Tunisia has been held up as an example of Arab Spring success. It is a bastion of stability in an otherwise unstable region. As CNN's
Arwa Damon reports, this attack is an unsettling reminder that regional turmoil may be creeping in.
ARWA DAMON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: The museum was a carefully chosen target, a place often visited by foreigners but lightly
guarded, and right next door to the parliament building.
The gunmen opened fire on the visitors in the late morning, their victims from across Europe -- Poland, France, Italy, Spain to name a few
and even some from South America.
In the chaos, some fled from the building while others hid. One French woman told of her ordeal.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (through translator): We were calmly visiting the museum. At first we thought a statue had fallen over, but then we heard
screams, then eventually realized it was gunfire exploding. We didn't know what we were going to do, so we hid.
DAMON: In the neighboring parliament building, legislators were told to take cover.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And suddenly we saw a firefight just next to the building. (inaudible) everyone was very shocked and the administration
came to tell us to lay down.
DAMON: Tunisian Prime Minister Habib Essid said violence would not be allowed to destroy democracy. But such a brazen attack in the capital
confirms the fears of many in Tunisia that it cannot escape the tide of Islamic extremism that now afflicts much of the Arab World.
It is estimated that more Tunisians than any other nationality have gone to fight with ISIS and other jihadist groups. Some are now thought to
have returned home or to neighboring Libya where ISIS supporters have a growing presence.
Tunisian officials are desperately worried that jihadist violence will spill across the country's long border with Libya. Perhaps it already has.
ANDERSON: Well, two of the suspects have been identified by the prime minister, but only one of them was known to security services, it seems.
Arwa Damon is in Tunis with the very latest developments.
One of these gunmen, then, at least on the security services radar. What are your sources telling you about who he is and how he slipped their
DAMON: Well, it's actually very little that is known. One former MP that we spoke to did say that based on information she had gathered, this
was someone who had in fact been to the battlefield in Syria. What part of extremist organizations, ISIS there, and then managed to make his way
back to Libya and then crossed illegally from Libya into Tunisia. And that she along with others were saying that the reverse flow of fighters,
hundreds believed to have come back from the ISIS battlefield into this country, are of great concern to the security apparatus, because even
though up until now there has been no significant act of violence carried out by them or by other groups.
Monitoring all of them, keeping track of all of their movements, is incredibly difficult.
And perhaps in speaking to that, the government really trying to show the population, show the international community, that it had been taking
measures prior to this horrific attack. At a press conference that took place inside the museum itself, a number of government ministers said that
in the last four weeks, some 400 people accused of various different acts of terrorism, links to terrorism, had been apprehended and yet we still
have a security situation where this kind of attack can take place.
And so a lot of people are asking where is the security lapse at this stage? And what does the country need to do to make sure that people like
this don't slip through the net, but also just as importantly how do you prevent people from being lured and brainwashed by organizations like ISIS
to begin with, Becky.
[11:05:37] ANDERSON: Yeah, Arwa, ironically we believe that it was anti-terror legislation that was being discussed and debated in parliament
yesterday at the point at which this attack in the museum next door happened.
Are we, at this point, reporting that there is anybody still on the run for this case? I mean, there have certainly been a number of arrests.
What else do we know?
DAMON; Well, here is what we don't know. There were three gunmen on the loose. The government says that it has detained nine individuals since
this attack happened, four of them directly related. We don't know if any of those three gunmen are amongst those who were detained. So it is
possible that they are still out there.
Not to mention the public's concern that there are perhaps other individuals that might be inspired by the attacks that took place. They
might decide to carry out further acts of violence. So they are most certainly at this stage is more unknown then there is known and yet when
this attack happened yesterday, parliament was debating a highly controversial anti-terrorism law, controversial because its opponents say
that it allows the security apparatus too much power, allows them the ability to operate with a degree of impunity that the legislation's
opponents are not comfortable with.
It is too reminiscent, they say, of the lives they had to lead of the imposition of law under the dictatorship of a former president Ben Ali.
And they say that the freedoms that they fought for stand to be at risk if this legislation is passed.
So the country is finding itself in a very sensitive situation, because on the one hand it did fight so hard for those freedoms, and on the
other hand given what happened yesterday, the government has to take more stringent measures to ensure such an attack does not take place again,
ANDERSON: Arwa Damon is our senior international correspondent in Tunis, in Tunisia for you.
Arwa, thank you.
We've got a lot more on this story coming up this hour. We're going to look back at what Tunisia has been through as the cradle of the Arab
Spring. And we'll plot where it's going. Specifically what it's trying to do about homegrown extremism and threats from beyond its borders.
And with Tunisia's tourism industry on the mend, or certainly it was following the Arab Spring, what impact could this attack have?
Our emerging markets editor is here to break that down for us. And that will be in about 20 minute's time.
Well, moving on. And a senior official at the U.S. State Department has denied that there is a draft document of a nuclear deal circulating
yet. As talks with Iran continue in Lausanne in Switzerland.
For a fifth day, representatives of the Middle Eastern country are negotiating with the U.S. and European diplomats to ease sanctions, of
course, impose on Iran.
Let's get you to our senior international correspondent Nic Robertson who is there in Lausanne following those talks -- Nic.
NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yeah, Becky, what State Department officials are saying here in response to that associated
press report detailing what it thinks are some of the elements of the framework agreement that are being talked here, the State Department
specifically saying that there isn't a document that's being circulated at the moment as articulated by the Associated Press.
What the State Department is saying is that all elements of the framework agreement that has to be agreed by the 31st of March are still
being negotiated, so therefore it is that nothing is locked down so far.
And this has been the point of State Department officials all along that there needs to be some key decisions made by Iranian officials. And
Secretary Kerry has made the point that these are political decisions.
We've also heard from -- this morning from the -- his Iranian counterpart, the foreign minister Javad Zarif as he took an early morning
walk before the talks. He talked to me. He talked about progress. This is what he said.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ROBERTSON: Have you made progress, sir?
MOHAMMAD JAVAD ZARIF, IRANIAN FOREIGN MINISTER: We are making progress, but there are issues that need to be resolved.
ROBERTSON: Which issues, sir?
ZARIF: Even more progress is needed, huh?
ROBERTSON: Which issues need progress, sir?
ZARIF: All of them. No, some of them.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
[11:10:03] ROBERTSON: So he was really indicating there, he was sort of stepping back from saying we need progress on everything to trying to
indicate that, you know, some progress is being made.
But the nature of the talks here, they are behind closed doors and that the State Department and others had been at pains not to leak any of
the details as this process goes on. This is the way they've been handling these talks all along.
So it does seem at the moment at least, Becky, they're trying to put a lid on what the Associated Press has been reporting to the extent of saying
there is no document being circulated and everything, everything is being discussed. They talk about it like a Rubic's Cube until you get everything
agreed, nothing can really be agreed. It's such a complex puzzle, Becky.
ANDERSON: Nic Robertson in Lausanne. Nic, thank you.
Well, across North Africa and the Middle East, much of the region's troubles are exacerbated by youth unemployment and disillusionment, things
that the Arab Spring was meant to overcome.
Still to come tonight, we'll examine the aftermath of a deadly protest in Egypt four years after the uprising that brought down Hosni Mubarak.
And we'll also investigate why Tunisia gave so many people cause for optimism in the aftermath of its uprising and what's at stake if extremism
takes hold there.
You're watching CNN. This is Connect the World with me Becky Anderson. Stay with us.
ANDERSON: Well, a steady stream of tourists queuing to leave Tunisia after gunmen killed more than 20 people, mostly foreigners, in the national
museum on Wednesday.
After years of upheaval, the North African nation was seeing finally signs of stability and growth with cash from the tourism industry a key
part of that.
Well, it's been widely seen as the only success story of the Arab Spring, but Tunisia's political openness has given more breathing room to
radicals, it seems. That has left many moderates in the government feeling uneasy.
For more on that, let's bring in Atika Shubert at our London bureau.
And let's just start with where we were with Tunisia before we talk about where we go next.
You had what many were describing as this democratic secular government with elements of political Islam and a moderate basis, you know,
an inclusive, as it were, rather than exclusive political environment, which looked as if it was the perfect model for the post-Arab Sprin world
in the Middle East. And yet it seems festering pockets, more than festering pockets of jihadist militancy in the country.
Where did things go wrong?
ATIKA SHUBERT, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, I think you have to go far back. It doesn't -- it's not just about the environment
that's now -- remember that Tunisia has had a long history of political repression under a military dictatorship. This was much -- this was ended
in the 2011 revolution. And even though that ushered in democracy, it also lifted the lid on this sort of very radical extremist political Islamist
And so what we started to see was even though you see all kinds of other political groups growing, you also see radical groups like Ansar al
Sharia growing exponentially.
At the same time you have countries next door like Libya deteriorating and the law and order has completely disappeared and you see all kinds of
militant groups next door.
So what's been happening is that anybody who has been following these militant groups in Tunisia finds it very easy now to cross over into Libya,
get some training, and from there they can either return to Tunisia or go off to other jihad battlefronts such as in Syria and Iraq.
And in fact Tunisia has the most jiahdi fighters with groups like ISIS in Syria and Iraq, more than 3,000, that's according to official government
estimates. And that's a staggering number.
So when you consider that, yes, Tunisia has been a success story, but it also has a very serious problem with extremist Islamist groups.
[11:16:11] ANDERSON: I just want our producer to bring up that map again, because you describe the very porous border with Libya, of course, we must
look to the west and Algeria where several jihadist groups have pledged allegiance to, for example, ISIS. So problematic to see Tunisia, of
course, sandwiched between these two neighbors.
So we've been reporting that several thousand Tunisians have joined ISIS in Syria and Iraq, but here's the rub, of course, Atika, upwards of
10,000 Tunisians have been prevented from going to Iraq and Syria, we believe through the confiscation of their passports and through travel
bans. This was an anti-terror policy that the Tunisian government has been touting as a success until now.
But preventing potential reports of course begs two questions, doesn't it. The first being this, what happens to those who sympathize with
jihadist militant groups, want to be part of their war, but never get the change to leave the country. How is the government able to monitor them?
Because it certainly appears in this instance they weren't.
SHUBERT: Well, exactly. And in fact it seems that both of the gunmen were known to security services. They had been monitored, but they hadn't
shown any signs of being unusual in any sense, or plotting any attacks.
And as security services in Europe know, it is very difficult to monitor hundreds if not thousands of persons of interest much less in a
country like Tunisia, which is undergoing a lot of political upheaval. Yes, it now has stable -- had stable elections. It has a stable government
in power, but it's still reeling from the revolution of 2011. And its security services have been under tremendous pressure.
So keeping track of all these people is a very difficult job.
And as you point out, Tunisia has been a success story of the Arab Spring, but it's in a bad neighborhood, sandwiched between Algeria and
Libya across the whole region it's dealing with a number of Islamist movements, not just ISIS influenced movements, but also al Qaeda in the
Islamic Magreb, in Algeria. And what it means is that Tunisia is battling on all fronts and what this attack perhaps shows is that it can't do it all
ANDERSON: And that begs the second question, of course, not having a passport doesn't mean a young Tunisian can't slip back and forth over what
is a very porous Libya border, and indeed an Algerian one.
We know that Tunisian are fighting with groups like ISIS in Libya. So how does the government tackle that when you've got a country like Libya,
which is ungoverned effectively at this point.
SHUBERT: I think this is the biggest challenged for Tunisia, what do to with these neighbors it has, especially Libya where Tunisian fighters
can very easily -- they know it's become a pipeline of fighters going there to train.
And what happens when some of them do come back?
And as you point out, just because you take somebody's passport away and prevent them from going, doesn't mean they're not still fomenting these
ideas and plotting attacks as other countries have well discovered.
So this is going to be the biggest challenge for security services. And it's not clear that they're going to be able to monitor them all.
What they do have to do is keep a better sort of a better idea of what's happening to the Islamist groups, perhaps even outreach programs to
find out what is happening to Tunisian youth that they're finding this to be a much more appealing message than the democracy that's already in
power. And that's about winning hearts and minds which takes a very long time.
ANDERSON: Atika Shubert is in London for you today.
I want to get you to another regional hotspot now we are monitoring and that is the situation in Yemen where fighting has increased
dramatically in the country's south.
Now fierce battles rocked the international airport in the port city of Aden earlier today. Armed supporters and opponents of the President Abd
Rabbuh Mansur Hadi traded fire. At least six people are reported dead and dozens are wounded.
CNN can confirm that the president has been moved from where he was staying in Aden, that after an attack on his compound there.
Forces loyal to the president are trying to secure his control of the city where he fled after Shiite Houthi rebels took over the capital Sanaa
some weeks ago.
Lets' get you the very latest from the journalist Hakim Almasmari who is joining us from the capital of Sanaa right now.
If you can unpick for us exactly what is going on and the significance of the pictures that we are seeing out of Aden today.
[11:20:50] HAIK, ALMANMARI, JOURNALIST: Basically, the Houthis right now trying to control Aden the same way they controlled Sanaa last month,
or a couple of months back.
President Hadi is in Aden after he fled Sanaa last month, but the authority there, the military there, and specifically the special forces in
Aden are still loyal to the Houthis and to the ex-president of Yemen Ali Abdullah Saleh. They (inaudible) to show that Hadi did not get a
stronghold in Aden and has been involved in negotiations with the anti-Hadi military did over the last couple of weeks. They failed. Today they went
to the street and they closed down all the roads and (inaudible) close to the airports. This is where Hadi and his troops were forced to retaliate
and hundreds of military troops who came from nearby provinces supported Hadi under the ordership of the defense minister.
When this happened they fled. And after they fled, the Houthis retaliated by attacking the presidential palace in Aden with two
airstrikes, one that attacked the palace directly, and one the attack downtown Aden just 30 minutes later.
Right now it's still very tense. You have hundreds of militants in Aden's streets right now from both sides. The governor of Aden has
confirmed that as of now the death toll has increased to 13 killed and at least 21 injured.
The majority of the killed from those anti-Hadi troops who were fighting against them, but this seems it will take a long time to look over
to these anti-Hadi troops are there on the ground, Becky.
ANDERSON: Hakim reporting for you on a what is a developing story out of Yemen for you this hour.
Live from Abu Dhabi, this is Connect the World with me Becky Anderson, 22 minutes past 7:00 in the UAE, which is where we broadcast from.
How will Tunisia's tourism industry hold up after foreigners were gunned down in the national museum. 24 hours on I'll talk to the country's
investment minister. That is in around 10 minute's time for you.
And Egyptians are still protesting four years after the uprising to get (inaudible) one such protest.
ANDERSON: This is Connect the World with me, Becky Anderson. Welcome back. You're watching CNN.
Egypt and Tunisia had their own revolution, of course, and it was during a peaceful protest on the fourth anniversary of that uprising that
Shaima al Sabah (ph) was shot and killed.
Well, the incident was partly captured on video. Well, not Egypt's state prosecutor has ordered a police officer to stand trial in her death.
This report from Ian Lee.
[11:25:22] IAN LEE, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: The final moments of a revolutionary. She fought for the rights of those killed
during Egypt's revolution only to join them.
Activists say police shot and killed Shaima al Sabah (ph) while breaking up a peaceful protest in January.
Said Abu Ella (ph) held her in her final moments.
He tells me, "we found blood on Shaima's (ph) neck. She fell to the ground silent. Then I carried her across the street to this spot."
Shaima (ph) rose in prominence during the 2011 revolution. The young mother was just 31. Friends remember her for her passion for fighting for
Seen here in Alexandria leading a chant "raise your voice. It will kill you."
"Police forces killed Shaima (ph) three times," Abu Ella (ph) says, "the first time when they shot her, the second when they prevented us from
helping her by arresting us. And the third when they didn't get her an ambulance."
The then minister of interior initially denied the use of deadly force, but in its own investigation Human Rights Watch reconstructed
Shaima's (ph) final moments.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And you can clearly see here, this police officer getting in a shooting stance, pointing his gun towards the protesters and
then the shot rings and Shaima (ph) with a gray sweater falling to the pavement.
LEE: The government, meanwhile, conducted its own probe. And this week, Egypt's general prosecutor charged the police officer with killing
Shaima (ph), a positive step, activists say, in a coutnry where police often act with impunity.
But Brigadier General Hatem Fathy insists, they always follow the rule of law.
BRIG. GEN. HATEM FATHY, MINISTRY OF INTERIOR: Now we cannot say there is impunity, because when one is identified and held responsible by a
public prosecutor, he would be sent to jail.
We don't protect anyone of our officers or soldiers if he was proven to commit a crime.
LEE: The prosecutor also charged Shaima's (ph) fellow protesters with violating a protest law.
Thousands of Egyptians have lost their lives in clashes since 2011. Some of their faces immortalized on the streets while their perpetrators
Abu Ella (ph) hopes justice will be served in the killing of his friend Shaima (ph).
He tells me, "her political stance represented the conscience of the revolution regardless of ideology. She wanted to create a better Egypt for
her son, nothing more. We will continue her dream."
He recalls her last words before being shot. We won't leave until we finished what we came here to do, a final vow he intends to keep.
Ian Lee, CNN, Cairo.
ANDERSON: And another post revolution development in Egypt this day, ironically. The Mubarak era interior minister Habib al Adly (ph) has been
acquitted of illegally accumulating about $25 million after what was a much publicized corruption case.
He's one of many ministers under Mubarak that have been cleared of charges against them.
You're up to date. And the world news headlines will follow this short break.
Plus, a crushing b low to a country just getting back on its feet. I'm going to get back to Tunisia with the investment minister who joins me
next to talk tourism and terrorism and the impact on what is a faltering economy.
[11:31:47] ANDERSON: You're watching Connect the World with me Becky Anderson. The top stories for you this hour here on CNN.
And nine people have been arrested in connection with the attack in Tunisia that left at least 23 people dead. Most of the victims were
foreign tourists. Tunisian president's office says four suspects are directly linked to the armed rampage. On Tuesday, Reuters reporting that
the military is being deployed to several cities as a security measure.
An aid to Yemen's president says the leader has been evacuated to a safe place. Earlier a war plane attacked his compound in Aden, but was
driven off by anti-aircraft fire. Also Thursday, heavy fighting reported at Aden's airport between presidential forces and opponents.
A senior official at the U.S. State Department has denied that a draft document of an Iran deal is now being circulated. That official says
fundamental framework issues are still being discussed at nuclear talks with Iran in Lausanne in Switzerland.
Police in Japan are investigating 30 calls made in February threatening to kill Carolyn Kennedy, the U.S. ambassador to Japan, that is
according to CNn affiliate TV (inaudible). Also in Tokyo, police have told CNN that a 52-year-old man has been arrested after he admitted making three
calls threatening to bomb the U.S. embassy in Tokyo and a U.S. Marine base in Okinawa.
I want to get you back to our top story tonight. The small north African state of Tunisia where the Arab spring started four years ago.
Until now, many people have regarded it as the only success story from all of the upheaval over the last four years. In a moment, we'll hear from
Yassine Ibrahim, who is the Tunisian minister for foreign investment.
First, let's get an overview of how the Tunisian economy has been doing from our emerging markets editor John Defterios.
And John, where do things stand at present?
JOHN DEFTERIOS, EMERGING MARKETS EDITOR: Well, it's a fairly rough time to have a terrorism attack here on the tourism sector. A March attack
is not going to help the bookings going into April, May and June, the peak season for the European travelers that are going there.
We already see that Costa Cruises, Becky, in the last couple of hours have canceled stops into Tunisia. Earlier in the day, U.S. and UK
governments have put out travel warnings.
But this is at at at time when Tunisia was starting to make a comeback when it comes to tourism. We have a bar chart here going back to 2010.
And overall visitor numbers to Tunisia bakc in 2010 was nearly 7 million a year, that plummeted, not surprising as you know 2011 because the Arab
Spring, down to 4.7 million. Then we see this recovery back up to 6 million last year.
The target over the next couple of years was to get to 10 million. And ironically, they were promoting cultural tourism into Tunisia. And the
Bardo museum attack of course is going to scare the tourists away and they'll probably stay on the Mediterranean coast, and in fact cut back
tourism numbers over the next six months.
ANDERSON: The World Bank has forecast, what, 2.7 percent growth I think in 2015, that's not enough even if they were to make that by any
stretch to dent what is very high unemployment there.
DEFTERIOS: This is the reality. As you known -- in this part of the world, the Middle East and North Africa, you have to grow at least 5
percent or more to dent youth employment. They have one of the highest youth unemployment rates in the world. It hovers around 34, 35 percent.
The overall unemployment rate has been hovering around 15 percent.
Now, this is interesting, the economy used to grow 7 percent 10 years ago, 2004, even going into 2010 it was hovering 5, 6 percent. Since the
Arab Spring, they're struggling to get to 3 percent growth. This is the real challenge.
[11:35:18] ANDERSON: And youth unemployment across this region, one of the root causes of the 2011 unrest ironically.
DEFTERIOS: Yeah. That is the irony here.
Now they try to diversify the economy. What I find is very challenging for Tunisia. As you talked about earlier in the program, it's
a textbook case of coming out of the Arab Spring, having a coalition government, a president elected in November, putting forward the reform
program for economic reforms, giving everybody a five year snapshot saying we want to grow at 7 percent again and bring in foreign direct investment.
And you talked about Egypt earlier in the program. Ironically I was in Sharm el-Sheikh last weekend, a market of 90 million consumers.
President el-Sisi's guaranteeing security, said I'll handle the security, you come in. They put in $36 billion over one weekend, you look at the FDI
numbers for Tunisia today, it's less than $1 billion a year.
So you have a market of 11 million consumers and a market of 90 million consumers. It's nine times the size of Tunisia. So no matter what
they do it doesn't have the scale, so you've got to have the security. And it's very difficult today when you share a border with Libya.
ANDERSON: John Defterios on the backstory to the economy, fleshing out the problem as we've said is a root cause, it seems, of so much of the
problems that you see across the Middle East, that being youth unemployment as well. Thank you very much indeed.
Well, let's get some perspective now from the Tunisian government.
Yassine Ibrahim, minister of foreign investment and international cooperation joins me now live from Tunis.
Sir, I want to look at this foreign direct investment in Tunisia. As John and I have just been discussing, according to the Tunisia government,
the country took in over $1 billion in 2008. Contrast that with the 2013 figure it's almost halved to just down to under $1 billion -- $921 million
Are we right to be pointing out that clearly with such small numbers being invested in the country, the economy is suffering, youth employment
is an issue, and that is where you get these festering problems that may result -- or certainly have done -- in your country in this rise of radical
Islam as it were, or certainly radicalism?
YASSINE IBRAHIM, MINISTER OF FOREIGN INVESTMENT: Yeah. Thank you very much giving me this opportunity after a terrible day that we had
yesterday her in Tunisia where terrorism has reached a level -- a new level, in fact, the first time in Tunisia that we have an attack to
civilians and especially guests of Tunisia.
(inaudible) we are really sorry for all the family. And we present our condolences with -- to all of the families in Tunisia and all over the
The -- talking about the investment. In fact, in Tunisia we had a setback investment during the last years, because we had first of all eight
governments in four years. We've been building a new constitution, we've been building new institutions, and for the first time we had elections for
a parliament for five years. We had election for president for five years. So this government that started six weeks ago, we are ready to build and we
are ready to build now a plan and a vision for five years.
And any investors need stability, need visibility, need orientation, priorities and that's what we will do.
The attack that we had yesterday is an attack to Tunisia as we had an attack to France one month ago, as we had an attack to Denmark. We have a
global war against terrorism in the region. And of course Tunisia was touched yesterday. But we will raise the (inaudible) to track and gather
these people because we won't stop because of this kind of attacks, of course.
Sir, just while you have been speaking I'm just getting information here to CNN, a U.S. official telling the network there is no reason to
doubt the authenticity of the claims from ISIS that they were responsible for carrying out this attack. Is that what you are hearing as well? Can
you confirm that that is what the government is hearing at this ponit?
IBRAHIM: Sorry, I'm not hearing you very well. Are you talking about -- sorry, I didn't hear you very well.
ANDERSON: Sir, can you -- yeah, can you confirm claims that ISIS is taking responsibility for this attack at the Bardo museum yesterday.
[11:40:07] IBRAHIM: Yeah, yeah, of course.
The -- what we had yesterday is a kind of escalation at a level that of course we were working on it. We were thinking that we could reach it.
That's the first time, in fact, we had terrorism attacks more on the borders and the mountains against security forces, against the army. And
of course we've been attacking that with a lot of investment and the security forces and the army forces coordination between them and the
borders. And we were starting to prepare and we had (inaudible) around 400 persons that are connected coming back from Syria or coming back from Iraq
that are connected to the terrorist networks.
What they have tried to do yesterday, they are trying to -- they attacked the museum, which is a signal -- the museum, one of the most
reputation (ph) museum in the world where we have the history of Tunisia, the history of the civilizations that went through our country during our
They attack it two days before independence day. And in fact it's a reaction to all what the security forces are doing for the last four or
five weeks where they are really now they are struggling. And this attack, of course, is hurting us, but that we'll make Tunisia more strong and will
make all the society helping the security forces now to fight against these terrorist groups.
ANDERSON: Let me put one other question to you, because as part of what was an audio recording by ISIS taking responsibility for this attack
they have warned that this is, quote, just the start. Your response.
IBRAHIM: The responsibility to whom, sorry, too?
ANDERSON: ISIS have said that this is, and I quote, "just the start."
IBRAHIM: Start. I didn't catch the word, but I mean the responsibility for us today is (inaudible) to this -- the responsibility
today, in fact, we are still of course under -- hello, you hear me?
ANDERSON: All right, apologies to our guest and to our viewers. I think you can tell that we're on a really bad line there. But we are very
much appreciate the time by the investment minister spent with us.
I've still got John Defterios with me here. I mean, -- oh, I'm being told we haven't got time. Sorry, John.
DEFTERIOS: I could have carried on for a couple of more minutes.
ANDERSON: I'm Backy Anderson, that was Connect the World. We have run out of time.