Tunisian authorities insist country is safe for visitors

Tunisian authorities insist country is safe for visitors

Tunisian authorities insist the country is safe for holidaymakers as Tui resumed flights from the UK this week following Thomas Cook’s resumption in February.

Tunisian officials were in London last week to meet UK security representatives.
Communications chief Khalifa Chibani told Travel Weekly:

“There is an intensification of security, with the presence of officers in resorts, on beaches, in hotels, in leisure centres, on roads used by tourist coaches and at all places that attract visitors.

“We have mobile patrols on the coast and securing the outskirts of tourism resorts, with additional forces on standby.”

Tui put Tunisia on sale in January for the first time since June 2015 when 38 of its customers, including 30 Britons, were killed in a terrorist attack in Sousse.

The Foreign Office relaxed its advice against all but essential travel to Tunisia last July.

At an inquest into the deaths in January 2017 the coroner described the Tunisian police response to the attack as “at best shambolic”.

Chibani insisted things had changed, saying: “Our security forces are ready to face any threat.

Latest Foreign Office advice notes: “The Tunisian government has improved protective security in major cities and tourist resorts . . . but security forces remain on a high state of alert.”

Restrictions on electronic devices on aircraft departing Tunisia to the UK have been in place since March 2017.

Tunisia remains in a state of emergency and the Foreign Office still advises against travel to parts of the country including border areas with Algeria and Libya.

Thomas Cook resumed flights to Tunisia from Birmingham, Manchester and Gatwick in February, added Glasgow in April and will add Stansted and Newcastle this month.

Tui resumes flights this week to Hammamet from Birmingham, Bristol, Gatwick and Manchester.

Tunisia hopes to attract 80,000 UK visitors this year – a fraction of the 440,000 who visited in 2014.

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