the diplomat reflects on his best and worst moments

End of mission for Moez Sinaoui: the diplomat looks back on his best and worst moments

The former Tunisian ambassador in Rome, Moez Sinaoui, returned last week to the diplomatic relations between Tunisia and Italy and the files that he was able to work on while he was at the head of the representation. Tunisian diplomacy in Italy, especially illegal migration and the Italian waste case.

In an interview given to Agenzia Nova on Friday, September 16, 2022, on the occasion of the end of his mission, he described the bilateral relations between Tunisia and Italy as “strategic”, noting that the historical ties between the two countries not in danger. change following the early Italian general election due to be held on 25 September. ” Regardless of who wins the legislative elections, and regardless of the form of the next government, the relationship between the two countries will not change. “, he said before emphasizing: “ Italy is a key partner with whom we have strong historical, human, cultural, political and economic ties that have enabled us to overcome incidents such as the issue of waste illegally exported to Tunisia in 2020 “.

Explains it” this difficult issue could be resolved after two years thanks to political will, great effort and bilateral work “, Moez Sinaoui added: “ Italian-Tunisian connections are strong. This was demonstrated during the pandemic, especially when we showed cooperation and solidarity by sending a team of doctors and nurses from Tunisia to the Lombardy region in April 2020. The Italian government has also shown solidarity with us by sending equipment and vaccines to deal with the spread (of the pandemic) “.

The arrival at the port of Salerno of 213 of the 282 containers of waste on February 19, 2022 was one of the best moments that the diplomat remembered. “ The result of very long negotiations and a complex process which I hope will soon be concluded with the return of the remaining 69 containers “, he continued. He evoked his best memories and returned to the height of the bilateral relations between Tunisia and Italy. He cited in this sense the preparations for the two official visits to Italy of the former president of the Republic, Béji Caïd Essebsi, and the current tenant of Carthage, Kaïs Saïed, which took place respectively on 8 and 9 September 2019 and 16 and 17 June 2021. These two visits “ was a concretization of the bilateral relations between the two countries “.

Moez Sinaoui also returned to the organization of one of the largest exhibitions devoted to Carthage. “ The opening of the exhibition Carthage, the eternal legend, held in the Colosseum Archaeological Park from September 27, 2019 to March 29, 2020, was an exceptional moment that I will never forget. he assured remembering it more than 400 archaeological artefacts brought from 36 different museums in the Mediterranean were exhibited “.

The diplomat also spoke about the difficult times he lived through during the six years he spent at the Tunisian embassy in Rome. “Every phone call that provoked the sinking of a boat or the death of Tunisian migrants trying to reach Italy was a very difficult moment on a human level,” he said.

Commenting on the figures of the Italian Ministry of the Interior on the number of illegal Tunisian migrants arriving in Italy – 14,036 between January and September 15, 2022 – the diplomat said that Tunisia was “very committed to the fight against clandestine migration”. ” Dozens of attempts are thwarted every day,” he assured, before adding: “We cannot tolerate human trafficking (…) We must negotiate to reach a global agreement that regulates migration and opens doors to legal migration, thus allows Tunisians to come to Italy, not because they are driven by desperation, but because of the opportunities they have “.

In the same context, Moez Sinaoui specified that Tunisian society had developed in recent years, explaining that 200,000 additional people have arrived in Italy over the past six years. “ I tried to communicate with especially young people, to get to know them and to organize meetings “, he said, while expressing his thanks to the Tunisian community for showing “extraordinary unity and solidarity” during the pandemic, referring to the aid sent to Tunisia.” I hope that this spirit will continue and be strengthened, especially among young second and third generation students and leaders. There is still hope for change and improvement “, he concluded.

In August 2016, while spokesman for the presidency of the republic, Moez Sinaoui was appointed Tunisian ambassador to Rome, where he served as political adviser and media adviser between 2000 and 2005.


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