BRUSSELS (Sputnik) — Tunisia opposes any military effort by the EU to tackle refugee smuggling across the Mediterranean Sea, Prime Minister Habib Essid said Thursday.
“Tunisia’s position was always clear…We are originally against all military action, both to regulate political conflict and to regulate the problem with illegal smugglers,” Essid said in the European Parliament.
In recent years, the European Union has been struggling with an influx of undocumented migrants fleeing conflicts in the Middle East and Africa.
Earlier this month, EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini said the 28-nation bloc did not consider bombing, foreseeing only a naval operation. Leaked documents, however, showed that EU strategy includes an aerial campaign, as well as deployment of ground forces in Libya, a major hub for smugglers.