15:50 GMT +316 July 2018
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    Tunisia Ensuring Security of Tourist Sites, Russian Visitors - Ambassador

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    The Tunisian ambassador to Russia said that the country's tourist facilities are firmly protected from threats.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Tunisian tourist facilities are firmly protected from potential threats, Tunisian Ambassador to Russia Ali Goutali said during a meeting with Russian Federal Tourism Agency (Rosturism) head Oleg Safonov on Monday.

    "Tourist sites are well-protected and there are no security threats to the holidaymakers. The Tunisian authorities are dealing with all the issues related to the security of Russians," Goutali said.

    The meeting was also attended by the Embassy's Adviser Beshir Hani and representative of the Tunisian National Tourist Office to Russia and the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) Mezhid Kahlaui.

    The Tunisian side stressed that all the necessary security measures were taken in the areas identified as possible targets for terrorist attacks in the reports of the competent authorities, a press release published by Rosturism on its website said.

    In turn, Safonov noted that Tunisia was not closed for Russians and welcomed the high security measures. "Tunisia has entered the top five popular Russian holiday destinations this summer," Safonov said.

    According to him, the safety of Russian visitors is the most important task.

    "We are in close contact with the Tunisian authorities who have expressed willingness to maintain a high level of protection for holidaymakers in the resorts," he said.

    On Thursday, Rosturism said that Daesh, banned in Russia and many other countries, was preparing a series of attacks against tourists as the numbers of tourists are increasing in the high season, referring to the information provided by the competent authorities.

    In response, the Tunisian National Tourist Office to Russia and the CIS issued a statement on Friday, saying that the Tunisian authorities had taken measures to ensure full security at airports, hotels and areas where tourists are staying.

    In June 2015, a lone gunman concealed an assault rifle in an umbrella and fired at tourists on a beach in Sousse, Tunisia, killing 38. Daesh claimed responsibility for the attack, forcing the closure of some 70 hotels in the area. Tunisia has been on high security alert since.

    According to the Russia’s Association of Tour Operators (ATOR), Russian tourist flow to Tunisia dropped by 80 percent in 2015, with a total of 50,000 Russian nationals visiting the country.


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