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Tunisian interim PM to meet U.S. president in Washington


09:04, September 29, 2011

TUNIS, Sept. 28 (Xinhua) -- Tunisian interim Prime Minister Beji Caid Essebsi will visit Washington next month at the invitation of U.S. President Barack Obama, the state-run press agency TAP reported Wednesday.

An official statement released Tuesday evening said the visit, from Oct. 3 to Oct. 7, comes in the framework of U.S. support for Tunisia in this transition period.

The visit aims to strengthen bilateral ties and discuss regional and international issues of mutual interest, including the situation in Libya, TAP said.

Essebsi will be received in the oval office by Obama on Oct. 7, the White House said Tuesday, adding that Obama will also highlight the "strong bonds of friendship" between the peoples of the United States and Tunisia.

In a major address on May 19, Obama said he hoped that both " Tunisia and Egypt can set a strong example through free and fair elections, a vibrant civil society, accountable and effective democratic institutions, and responsible regional leadership."

Several high-ranking U.S. officials, including Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, have visited Tunisia this year.


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