Sunday, March 28, 2004

Arab League: Tunesia cancels summit due to open tomorrow

On the agenda at the Tunis Summit was reform -- reform of the League, democracy in the member countries, etc... Tunesia cancelled it yesterday and Egypt has offered to host the summit.
The Tunisian government news agency said Tunisia had insisted that the summit explicitly endorse democracy and reject what it called "extremism, fanaticism, violence and terrorism" -- and that other countries had balked at this.

But a Gulf delegate linked the Tunisian decision to Ben Ali's stormy visit to Washington in February, when President Bush told him he wanted to see a free press and an "open political process" in Tunisia.

... "Ben Ali was asked to deliver a certain scenario at the summit and, when it was clear that he couldn't deliver, the Tunisians announced they were calling it off," said the Gulf delegate, citing a report from his foreign minister.
More detail here and here.