Libya threatens to close border with Tunisia amid unrest in Ben Gardane
The Deputy Chairman of Presidential Council Ahmed Mietieq has ordered the Libyan Foreign Ministry to take all necessary measures to ensure the safety of Libyan nationals in Tunisia following mistreatment of several Libyans driving back home through the Tunisian border town of Ben Gardane.
Mietieq also ordered the Ministry of Interior to close Ras Ajdir border if the Tunisian government did not take any action against the rioters in Ben Gardane, who he said, are trying tom undermine both countries’ relations.
Several Tunisian protesters in Ben Gardane have blocked the main roads on export trucks heading to Libya in protest of what they described as “mistreatment toward them by some Ras Ajdair border crossing personnel.”
The Tunisians also protesting against some measures taken by the Libyan side about trade exchanges between the two countries, which they see as “unfair.”
Earlier, many Libyan families have complained about the harsh treatment they received in Ben Gardane in reaction to Libyan authorities’ crackdown on illegal trade and fuel smuggling.
The border city of Ben Gardane depends mainly on the cross-border trade with Libya as unemployment rate there rises. Ben Gardane locals see Libya as the best place to seek prosperous life because there is no travel restriction between both countries.