The French lawmaker, Meyer Habib, from the Union of Democrats and Independents slammed, in a Facebook post, Tunisian President Kais Saied, who reportedly ordered the ministry of sports to launch a probe into the participation of an Israeli-French tennis player in a tournament in the North African country.
The MP urged French citizens to refrain from visiting Tunisia over the North African country’s outright rejection of Israel, saying it is following in Iran’s footsteps. Even sports is not spared, he lamented.
The Tunisian Tourism Minister expressed his astonishment and shock at the comments and demanded the MP to issue an apology to the Tunisian people.
Tunisia has no diplomatic relations with Israel and has repeatedly refused to thaw ties with Jewish state over its occupation of Palestine. It has rejected US President Donald Trump’s so-called “Deal of Century” unveiled this month. It also dismissed its ambassador to the UN Moncef Baati over “a grave professional mistake” after he distributed a document related to the Deal of the Century without consulting the Foreign Ministry and the presidency.
The content of the document does not contradict Tunisia’s position on the Deal. However, it might affect the passing of a resolution in the security council, Media advisor to the Tunisian presidency Rachida Ennaifer said.
President Saied in his inaugural speech in October vowed to remain faithful to Tunisia’s support for the Palestinian cause.