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23 mars 2015 1 23 /03 /mars /2015 12:45
Tunisie: un soldat tué dans l’explosion d’une mine posée par des jihadistes


23 mars 2015 45eNord. Ca (AFP)


Un soldat tunisien a été tué dimanche soir dans l’explosion d’une mine posée par des jihadistes dans une région montagneuse de l’ouest de la Tunisie, à la frontière avec l’Algérie, a annoncé à l’AFP le porte-parole du ministère de la Défense.


Un militaire a été tué et deux autres ont été blessés lorsqu’une mine a explosé au passage de leur véhicule sur les hauteurs ouest, à la frontière avec l’Algérie, a indiqué Belhassen Oueslati, sans vouloir préciser le lieu exact parce qu’une opération était en cours.


La mine a été posée par des éléments terroristes, a-t-il ajouté.


La Tunisie, qui vient d’être frappée par un attentat revendiqué pour la première fois par le groupe Etat islamique (EI), tente depuis la fin 2012 de neutraliser – sans succès pour l’instant – un groupe lié à Al-Qaïda au Maghreb islamique (AQMI), actif dans les massifs montagneux et forestiers à la frontière algérienne.


Plusieurs dizaines de soldats, policiers et gendarmes ont été tués dans des incidents liés à une mouvance jihadiste en plein essor depuis la révolution de 2011, notamment lors d’attaques les visant ou dans l’explosion de mines.


Mercredi, deux hommes armés ont ouvert le feu au musée du Bardo à Tunis, tuant 20 touristes et un policier tunisien. Revendiquée par l’EI, il s’agit de la première attaque à viser des étrangers depuis la révolution.

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22 mars 2015 7 22 /03 /mars /2015 08:50
photo Marina Militare

photo Marina Militare


March 19, 2015 Defense News (AFP)


ROME — Italy said Thursday it would increase its military presence in the central Mediterranean, describing a deadly attack on a museum in Tunis as fresh evidence of a growing threat from extremist groups.


"Following a worsening of the terrorist threat, dramatically demonstrated by yesterday's events in Tunisia, an increase in our air and naval deployments in the central Mediterranean has become necessary," Defence Minister Roberta Pinotti told the parliamentary defence and foreign affairs committee.


At least two Italian tourists died in Wednesday's attack on the Bardo museum in Tunis.


The minister said the increased military presence was required to defend Italy's multiple interests in the area in light of the growing risk posed by the presence of extremist groups and to ensure consistent levels of maritime security.


"North Africa has to represent our primary concern," Pinotti told lawmakers.


On top of the forces usually deployed, Italy has moved additional naval units, a maritime protection team, helicopters, planes and drones into the area, she added.


Pinotti said the extra resources were needed to protect communication lines, merchant shipping and offshore platforms and to facilitate increased surveillance of potential jihadist activity.


Italy has been on a heightened state of alert on its own territory for the last month following Islamic State's execution of 21 Egyptian Christians in Libya and threats by the group that it could seek to carry out terror attacks on the former colonial power.


Italian security chiefs are concerned that IS appears to be gaining a foothold in conflict-wracked Libya and could use it as a base to mount attacks on merchant ships or on Italy.


The chaos in Libya is also seen as a key factor driving an acceleration in the number of migrants arriving on Italy's shores by boat with current rates pointing to more than 200,000 landing this year.


Italian Foreign Minister Paolo Gentiloni warned last month that IS loyalists could team up with battle-hardened militia fighters in Libya and seize control of parts of the country.


Rome says it is ready to lead a peacekeeping operation in Libya on condition that the warring parties agree to lay down their weapons and the UN issues a green light.

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19 mars 2015 4 19 /03 /mars /2015 17:45
L’AP-OTAN affirme sa solidarité avec la Tunisie contre le terrorisme


Paris / Bruxelles, 19 mars 2015 -


Après l’attentat meurtrier au musée du Bardo mercredi 18 mars, l’Assemblée parlementaire de l’OTAN a exprimé aujourd’hui sa solidarité avec la Tunisie par la voix de Gilbert Le Bris, président du Groupe spécial Méditerranée et Moyen-Orient.

« Je condamne fermement l’attentat odieux qui a frappé Tunis hier. Mes pensées et celles de tous mes collègues de l’Assemblée parlementaire de l’OTAN vont aux victimes, aux blessés, à leurs familles et à leurs proches.



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18 mars 2015 3 18 /03 /mars /2015 17:45
Sikorsky Wins $93M for Eight UH-60Ms for Tunisia


Mar 18, 2015

 (Source: US Department of Defense; issued Mar 17, 2015)


Pentagon Contract Announcement


Sikorsky Aircraft Corp., Stratford, Connecticut, was awarded a $93,312,100 modification (P00233) to contract W58RGZ-12-C-0008 for eight "Green" configured UH-60M Blackhawk Helicopters for the Tunisian government.


Fiscal 2015 other procurement funds in the amount of $93,312,100 were obligated at the time of the award.


Estimated completion date is Dec. 31, 2016. Work will be performed in Stratford, Connecticut.


Army Contracting Command, Redstone Arsenal, Alabama, is the contracting activity.

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13 mars 2015 5 13 /03 /mars /2015 12:45
Algeria: The Peaceful Solution Soaked In Blood


March 13, 2015: Strategy Page


Algeria has offered to host peace talks for the mess in Libya, as has neighboring Morocco. So far this year Libyan factions have held negotiating sessions in both countries, but no peace deal has yet been agreed to. Despite the appearance of ISIL (Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant) in Libya Algeria and most Western nations (especially the EU) still see a negotiated settlement as the best way to deal with the Libya civil war. The Libyan Tobruk (officially recognized by the UN) government goes along with this, mainly because they cannot afford to annoy the UN and risk losing international recognition as the legitimate government.


While the government continues to call for an “Algerian solution” to the chaos in Libya, less well publicized are the details of how Algeria achieved that solution. Algeria finally got a political deal with its surviving Islamic terrorists only after a decade of horrific violence. Because of all that slaughter Islamic radicalism lost most of its popular appeal by the late 1990s. This came after Islamic terrorists organized a rebellion earlier in the 1990s and murdered over 100,000 civilians who did not agree with them (or enthusiastically aid them). That bloodbath ended in 2005 with an amnesty deal that attracted most of the remaining Islamic terrorists. Some of the Islamic terrorists still operating in Algeria seem to acknowledge that connection and avoid further antagonizing civilians with the kind of mayhem still popular in places like Libya, Iraq and Syria. Despite the 2005 peace deal there still about a hundred armed Islamic terrorists killed in Algeria during 2014. So far this year it appears that number will be lower for 2015.


The increased Algerian border security, especially on the Mali and Libyan borders has led to more arrests, but almost all of those caught are smugglers, not Islamic terrorists. Most of the smugglers are moving consumer goods (cheap fuel, expensive alcohol, gadgets and low level drugs like cannabis, for use in Algeria) and illegal migrants headed for Europe. More valuable shipments like drugs headed for Europe (cocaine and heroin), precious metals (usually gold), illegal weapons (especially large quantities of explosives, RPGs and assault rifles), illegal migrants (who can afford to pay high fees) and known Islamic terrorists are rarely caught. This shows that these cargoes are relatively rare compared to food, fuel, consumer goods  and people smuggling and that many of the high-end smugglers who move these expensive items still have their arrangements with border security commanders to allow those who can pay large bribes to get through without interference. The border guards have incentives to catch smugglers as they get some of the value of the seized vehicles (usually expensive all-terrain models) and cargo as well as bribes from smugglers carrying items (like cocaine or hashish headed for Europe) that will not cause a unwanted publicity (about lax border security) inside Algeria.  Weapons are often carried by smugglers for self-defense against bandits, but the border guards make a big deal out of each arrested smuggler caught with self-defense weapons as being an “arms smuggler.” The increased border security effort has become a major problem for the low-end smugglers who have had to find new smuggling routes as the traditional ones (some used for centuries) are now patrolled by aircraft and troops on the ground. Because of the Islamic terror threat the government has made it more difficult for the smugglers to bribe their way past the security forces, which has simply led to higher bribes being paid by those (like Islamic terrorist groups that dominate drug smuggling in the region) who can afford it. The low value smugglers still get through, but in fewer numbers and via more difficult routes. The security forces are still detecting or arresting Islamic terrorists in the south and north who got smuggled in successfully or were recruited locally. Most of the smugglers arrested are not Algerians although Algerians tend to be the most common nationality found to be involved.


March 12, 2015: A court sentenced a blogger to six months in jail for posting a 2012 comment that the army considered insulting. The prosecutor wanted a ten year sentence and the accused was released after the trial because he had already been in jail awaiting trial for seven months. The blogger showed no regret for what he had done and the trial divided the country with many Algerians believing the government had gone too far in this case.


March 11, 2015: In the capital two days of UN sponsored peace talks between the major factions in the Libyan civil war ended with sweet words and eagerness to keep talking, but nothing that would end the fighting. The Libyan factions did admit that these talks are not just an effort to bring back peace and prosperity but also a matter of survival. The appearance of ISIL (Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant) in Libya has caused thousands of the more fanatic Islamic terrorists to sign in as affiliates of this highly destructive and uncompromising group. This has not created a united ISIL force and ISIL appears to spend most of its time raiding and looting just to get fed and resupplied with fuel and ammo. There are still organized Islamic terrorists groups fighting government (both Tripoli and Tobruk) forces but there is less of that because of the need to find something to eat.


March 10, 2015: Three Islamic terrorists were killed (and weapons and ammo seized) in a clash with soldiers 145 kilometers west of the capital.


March 4, 2015: In neighboring Tunisia police killed two Islamic terrorists near the Algerian border in the Chaambi Mountains. This came in the midst of another major sweep of the area to find hidden Islamic terrorist camps. Algeria moved more troops to the border area opposite the Chaambi Mountains in 2014 to prevent Islamic terrorists from entering Algeria. These big sweeps in the Chaambi Mountains have been going on since 2013 when, for the first time since 2007, Tunisa had to deal with organized groups of Islamic terrorists. The recent sweeps have found more weapons and other supplies hidden by Islamic terrorists for later user. Unoccupied camps have also been uncovered but there appear to be fewer and fewer Islamic terrorists up in the hills. The terrorists are often found to have moved, sometimes across the border, because they detected the approaching troops. Tunisia believes the Islamic terrorists in these mountains are sustained by supporters in cities and towns who get supplies and new recruits to them. Thus Tunisia is now paying more attention to the Islamic terrorist support network in the cities and towns. Not surprisingly there’s a lot more Islamic terrorist activity on the Libyan border, where the same types of sweeps are conducted but more frequently.


March 1, 2015: Troops ambushed Islamic terrorists near Beni Douala (95 kilometers east of the capital) and killed one of them.


February 28, 2015: In the south (near Tamanrasset, 2,000 kilometers south of the capital) 40 policemen were injured while dealing with hundreds of young Tuareg men violently demonstrating against government attempts to drill exploratory shale oil wells in the desert area. The Tuareg (the southern branch of the Berbers) are the majority in this thinly populated area and fear that the fracking process required to recover the oil trapped in shale rock will pollute the limited local water supply. In addition to fighting with police the protestors burned down the home of the local mayor. The Tuareg are nomads and their language and genetic makeup are similar to the Berbers. Most Algerians are genetically Berber but only about 20 percent of Algerians are culturally Berber and about 15 percent of these Berbers are Tuareg living down south. Although the Berbers are largely farmers and urban dwellers living along the coast most Tuareg are still nomads (or consider themselves such). Over two thousand years of invasions and conquests by foreigners has resulted in most Algerians becoming culturally Arab. These cultural differences are often a source of conflict. Genetic studies have shown the Tuareg to be more Berber than those in the north, apparently because there was less intercourse with invaders. During the ice age (and until a few thousand years ago) the Sahara was a well-watered plain where the ancestors of the Berbers and Tuareg were dominant. As the area turned to desert after the last ice age ended 12,000 years ago many of these people fled to the Nile River and became the ancient Egyptians. 


February 24, 2015: In Tunisia security forces arrested over a hundred Islamic terrorism suspects after uncovering an ISIL plot to launch numerous attacks inside Tunisia. That sort of violence has few fans in Tunisia and many locals willing to call the police with reports of suspicious behavior.


February 18, 2015: In neighboring Tunisia four policemen were ambushed and killed by Islamic terrorists near the Algerian border in the Chaambi Mountains. This was the first such Islamic terrorist activity in this area this year. Police assured the public that they would hunt down and find the attackers.


February 16, 2015: The fifth round of peace talks began in Algeria between the Mali government and an alliance of six northern rebel groups. This round of talks featured the personal participation of the Mali prime minister for the first time. These talks have been making slow progress because of the reluctance of the majority of Malians (black Africans in the south) to grant the degree of autonomy the lighter skinned Arab and Tuareg minority in the north want. Getting the Mali prime minister personally involved is seen as a step forward but there is still no final agreement.  After three days of negotiations there was still deadlock but the Tuareg rebels agreed to an immediate ceasefire to halt the fighting that has been going on for weeks.


February 14, 2015: In the northeast troops killed an Islamic terrorists near the Tunisian border.


February 13, 2015: Soldiers searching for terrorists about 100 kilometers southeast of the capital found and destroyed twelve structures (some of them fortified) along with twenty bombs and grenades as well as some electronic equipment. Also found was the decomposing body of a man later identified as a wanted Islamic terrorist leader.

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10 mars 2015 2 10 /03 /mars /2015 17:45
The closing ceremony of Exercise Flintlock 2015 - photo US Africom

The closing ceremony of Exercise Flintlock 2015 - photo US Africom


10 March 2015 by Africom - defenseWeb


The annual Flintlock exercise wrapped up on Monday in N’Djamena with a closing ceremony that brought together senior leaders from over 20 participating countries.


The Chadian exercise director, Brig. Gen. Zakaria Ngobongue, when bidding farewell to the guests and participants from different African and Western partner nations, who trained tirelessly in Chad, Niger, Nigeria, Cameroon and Tunisia, thanked the troops for their professionalism. “I am pleased to note that the progress made during this exercise was tangible and these results were reached thanks to willing participants.”


Ngonbongue thanked partner nations for the quality medical and humanitarian assistance that benefited citizens in locations near Mao, Faya and Moussoro. Similar medical activities were also conducted in Agadez, Niger.


The closing ceremony of the Flintlock exercise was also attended by the Commanding General of U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM), Gen. David Rodriguez, who thanked Chad for being a great host to this year’s Flintlock despite the security challenges the country faces.


“It is important to recognize that exercise Flintlock 2015 was successfully conducted by Chad and other African partners while actively engaged in combat operations against Boko Haram. The capacity to execute real world operations while simultaneously training to increase capacity and capability, demonstrates a level of proficiency exhibited only by an extremely professional, capable, and disciplined military,” said Rodriguez during the closing ceremony.


This year’s exercise was the largest Flintlock to date and has continued to build on the success of previous exercises. The three-week Chad hosted event included the implementation of a collaborative Command and Control and information sharing systems, which will remain in place for African partners to share operational information and intelligence with each other, as well as international partners.


Over 1,000 personnel from over 20 countries participated in Flintlock ‘15, with locations in Niger, Nigeria, Cameroon and Tunisia. Ten flight crews from Belgium, the United States, Canada, Spain, Denmark, Germany, Sweden, The Netherlands, Italy, and the United Kingdom moved most of the troops and 500,000 pounds of cargo with 113 flights. In all the locations, each soldier received 150 hours of training.


They also conducted four community activities, met with key leaders, and treated 1,800 people in several medical assistance clinics. Chadian and U.S. military, as well as U.S. Embassy personnel, also conducted outreach to an orphanage in N’Djamena, supporting victims of war, HIV, and poverty. With the support of non-governmental organization Spirit of America, $4,500 of educational supplies, hygiene tools, and basic items like blankets, sheets, towels, and mosquito nets were given to 59 orphans.


The tactical portion of Flintlock 2015 consisted of small-unit combined training and activities involving partner nation counter-terrorism units and military humanitarian relief operations to help improve the basic medical, dental and veterinary access for some communities in Chad and Niger.


As an enduring exercise, Flintlock is not focused on any specific security situation, but instead on developing security capacity, building professionalism, and strengthening bonds among exercise participants. Flintlock exercises began in 2005 and are conducted by the Special Operations Command Forward – West Africa (SOCFWD-WA) and sponsored by Africa Command’s Special Operations component to develop the capacity of and collaboration among African security forces to protect civilian populations across the Sahel region of Africa.


Flintlock exercises strengthen security institutions, promote multilateral sharing of information, and develop interoperability among the partner nations of the Trans-Sahara Counter Terrorism Partnership (TSCTP). Through exercises such as Flintlock, the United States Special Operations Command provides military training opportunities to foster relationships of peace, security, and cooperation among all Trans-Saharan nations through the TSCTP program.

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10 mars 2015 2 10 /03 /mars /2015 17:45
Réunion à Tunis du Comité directeur de l’Initiative « 5+5 Défense »


10.03.2015 Ministère de la Défense - Tunisie

Le 20eme Comité directeur de l’Initiative « 5+5 Défense » se tient les Mardi 10 et Mercredi 11 mars, à Tunis. Prennent part à ces assises des représentants des ministères de la Défense de Tunisie, d’Algérie, de Libye, du Maroc, de Mauritanie, d’Italie, d’Espagne, du Portugal, de Malte et de France.


La Tunisie, qui préside la session de 2015 de l’Initiative « 5+ 5 Défense », a proposé d’axer les travaux de cette réunion sur le renforcement des capacités opérationnelles des forces armées des pays de l’Initiative en vue de lutter contre les nouvelles menaces qui se dressent devant la région.

La Tunisie va œuvrer à sensibiliser les participants aux dangers du terrorisme et aux moyens de développer les compétences armées afin de combattre ce fléau dans un cadre euro-maghrébin.

Cette réunion sera consacrée à l’état d’avancement des projets en cours dans le cadre de l’Initiative, et ce en prévision de la 10eme session de la réunion des ministres de la Défense 5+5, prévue au cours de 2015 en Tunisie.


L’évaluation des activités programmées pour cette année et la préparation du calendrier des activités prévus pour l’année prochaine seront examinées lors de cette réunion. Le Comité directeur de l’Initiative « 5+5 Défense » se réunit deux fois par an. Chaque pays membre de l’Initiative « 5+5 Défense » y est représenté par deux membres.


Quant à la réunion des ministres de la Défense des pays membres de l’Initiative, elle se tient, une fois par an, dans le pays qui préside la session. L’Initiative « 5+5 Défense » dont la première session a eu lieu en Tunisie en 2003, a pour objectif l’instauration d’une coopération multipartite et de terrain relative aux questions sécuritaires d’intérêt commun et l’échange d’expériences, de compétences et de connaissances.


Les domaines de coopération de l’Initiative concernent la surveillance maritime de la région ouest de la Méditerranée, la contribution des forces armées dans la protection des civils en cas de catastrophes, la sécurité aérienne de la Méditerranée ouest, la formation et la recherche.

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9 mars 2015 1 09 /03 /mars /2015 17:45
US-led exercise in Chad prepares troops to fight terror

A Chadian platoon practices dismounting during mounted operations during Exercise Flintlock '15 at Moussoro, Chad on 19 February 2015. (U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Amber Martin)


9 March 2015 By Thomas Fessy - BBC Africa


Troops from Chad are leading the fight against the militant Islamists of Boko Haram in West Africa. Their troops are being trained to fight terror in an exercise deep in the desert.


Down at the firing range, it is the Chadians' turn. American special forces are training them on the machine gun. Chadian soldiers queue to lie down on a piece of cardboard, load the weapon and aim at a target around 150 metres away. Occasionally we hear the "ding" from a bullet hitting the metallic target. But what makes the soldiers cheer is when one of their comrades holds the trigger down, shooting several rounds at once from the automatic weapon. This shooting session is taking place in western Chad, in a section of the Sahel region that skirts the southern edges of the Sahara Desert. It is part of Operation Flintlock, an annual counter-terrorism exercise led by the United States and held with their Nato allies in West Africa. This tenth edition is particularly timely. These drills are taking place against the backdrop of a region preparing to take on Boko Haram in Nigeria. In fact, these Chadian troops may be going straight back into battle as soon as their training is over.


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4 mars 2015 3 04 /03 /mars /2015 13:45
Défense: Le général de brigade Taoufik Rahmouni nommé à la tête de l’ARSD


3 mars 2015


Le général de brigade Taoufik Rahmouni vient d’être nommé directeur de l’Agence des renseignements de la sécurité pour la défense (ARSD).


Selon le décret présidentiel (n° 2015-43 du 20 février 2015), la nomination de l’ancien porte-parole du ministère de la Défense a pris effet à compter du 20 février 2015.


Créée par deux décrets (n° 2014-4208 du 20 novembre 2014 et n° 2014-4209 du 20 novembre 2014), cette agence est «un établissement public à caractère administratif doté de la personnalité morale et de l'autonomie financière».


Sa mission consiste à «assurer la protection des agents, des installations, du matériel et des secrets du ministère de la Défense nationale, à collecter les renseignements à propos des menaces potentielles à la sécurité des forces armées et de la sécurité du pays en général», à contribuer à la prévention et à la lutte antiterrorisme, et à mettre «l’expertise nécessaire» en la matière à la disposition du commandement militaire et du ministre de la Défense nationale.


Le général de brigade Taoufik Rahmouni aura donc la lourde et passionnante tâche de créer cette agence et de la doter des moyens, surtout humains, pour accomplir ses missions, notamment dans le domaine de la lutte antiterroriste.

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12 février 2015 4 12 /02 /février /2015 18:45
US studying special operations airlift needs in Africa


12 February 2015 by Oscar Nkala/defenceWeb


The United States military is seeking to identify companies able to provide fixed wing air transport services on behalf of US Army Special Operations Command (SOCOM) in countries in Africa.


On February 4 the Federal Business Opportunities (FBO) register issued a notice saying Special Operations Command Africa was “conducting market research to identify parties having an interest in, and the resources to support, an emerging requirement for mobile fixed wing air transport services to move personnel and cargo within the northern regions of Africa and surrounding countries”.


SOCOM said the airlift services will cover the African nations of Libya, Algeria, Morocco, Tunisia and Senegal. Jordan, which is likely to the base for the Africa operations, is the only Middle Eastern country covered by the airlift requirement.


The fixed wing aircraft involved must be capable of transporting a minimum of 1 000 pounds and maximum of 4 500 pounds to include a mix of a maximum of 12 passengers and/or cargo. It must also be capable of taking off/landing on improved and unimproved dirt airfields of a minimum of 1 800 feet in length to support supply and personnel transportation requirements.


"The primary operation area where the air transportation support could be provided include, but are not be limited to, Libya, Jordan, Tunisia, Algeria, Senegal, and Morocco. Other locations within northern Africa may be dictated by operational requirements and timely coordination will ensure contractor support," the notice stated.


Responses are called for by February 23.


The notice comes amid calls for the Pentagon to prepare for a large-scale counter-insurgency campaign to destroy West African-based terrorist groups like Boko Haram and several other Islamist militant groups operating in Mali, Niger, Algeria, Mauritania and other 'safe havens' in the Sahel and Lake Chad sub-regions.


In remarks made during an address at the Centre for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, DC, last week, Africa Command (Africom) head General David Rodriguez said a US-led counter-insurgency campaign was necessary to eliminate the threat posed by new terrorist groups based in West Africa.


He said Africom is already preparing a response which will include operations that will target 'forces affiliated to Boko Haram' in four West African countries neighbouring Nigeria.


Presenting a lecture to students at the US Army's West Point academy early this month, Special Operations Command (SOCOM) commander General Joseph Votel said US Army commando teams must start preparing now for new deployments against Boko Haram and the Islamic State in north and west Africa.


“Boko Haram is creating fertile ground for (terrorist) expansion into other areas. While it is not yet a direct threat to the (US) homeland, it is impacting indirectly our interests in this particular area (West Africa) and creating another area of instability,” General Votel said.


So far, US special operations forces operating in the Africa and Middle Eastern regions have conducted a number of raids against al Shabaab in Somalia, Islamist militants in Libya and Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula in Yemen.

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18 décembre 2014 4 18 /12 /décembre /2014 21:45
La Tunisie hérite de la présidence de «l’Initiative 5+5 Défense»


17-12-2014 par Anas Amine-


La présidence périodique 2015 de «l’Initiative 5+5 Défense» a été confiée à la Tunisie pour succéder à l’Espagne. Une décision prise à la clôture de la 10ème réunion des ministres de la Défense nationale des pays du Maghreb et du sud de l’Europe, organisée du 10 au 12 décembre à Grenade (sud de l’Espagne).


Le ministre de la Défense, Ghazi Jeribi, a souligné, à cette occasion que «cette responsabilité permettra à la Tunisie de répondre avec efficience aux défis sécuritaires confrontés au Maghreb et de faire face aux menaces internes et externes qui pèsent sur la région».


La réunion a constitué une occasion aux hauts responsables méditerranéens pour passer en revue les risques qui menacent la sécurité et la stabilité de leurs pays, à savoir le terrorisme jihadiste, le trafic de drogue, la traite d’êtres humains, les migrations clandestines massives...


Par ailleurs, ils ont fait part d’une vive inquiétude face à la détérioration de la situation en Libye, dirigée par deux gouvernements et deux Parlements se disputant le pouvoir à distance, exprimant le souhait de voir se dessiner une solution à la crise.


Lancée en 2004, l’Initiative 5+5 Défense, regroupant cinq pays européens (France, l’Espagne, Italie, Malte et Portugal) et cinq Africains (Libye, Algérie, Tunisie, Maroc et Mauritanie), se propose de renforcer la coopération entre les États membres à travers la promotion de l’action commune et des compétences entre leurs forces armées respectives et l’échange d’expériences et d’expertises.


L’objectif de cette initiative est la prise en compte, en commun, des problèmes de sécurité dans la Zone de la Méditerranée occidentale, la lutte contre le terrorisme et les trafics de tout genre, la surveillance et la sécurité maritime, la sûreté aérienne, la protection des populations civiles en cas de catastrophes, en plus du domaine de la formation et de la recherche.

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11 décembre 2014 4 11 /12 /décembre /2014 17:45
Tunisia AF C-130J Lockheed Martin photo by John Rossino

Tunisia AF C-130J Lockheed Martin photo by John Rossino


MARIETTA, Ga., Dec. 11, 2014Lockheed Martin


The Republic of Tunisia received its second C-130J Super Hercules during a ceremony today at the Lockheed Martin facility here.

Tunisia received its first C-130J in April 2013, marking the first delivery of a J-model to an African nation. Lockheed Martin signed a contract in 2010 with Tunisia to deliver two C-130Js, as well as to provide training and an initial three years of logistics support.

“Tunisia’s Super Hercules fleet is both a national and a regional asset, able to support more missions than any other aircraft in operation today,” said George Shultz, vice president and general manager, C-130 Programs, Lockheed Martin Aeronautics. “We are proud to have Tunisia as a member of the global C-130J family. As legacy operators, Tunisian Air Force crews have long showcased why the C-130 is the world’s most versatile aircraft and continue to do so with its C-130J fleet.”

Tunisia’s new C-130Js are the longer fuselage or “stretched” variant of the aircraft. Tunisia’s new C-130Js will support operations across the mission spectrum, including relief efforts around the world, firefighting and traditional airlift sorties.

Sixteen countries have chosen the C-130J Super Hercules to meet their air mobility needs. The C-130J is the standard by which all other airlifters are measured in terms of availability, flexibility and reliability. With more than 1.2 million flight hours to date, the C-130J is available in nine variants and offers operators 17 different mission configurations.

Headquartered in Bethesda, Maryland, Lockheed Martin is a global security and aerospace company that employs approximately 113,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services. The Corporation’s net sales for 2013 were $45.4 billion.

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30 novembre 2014 7 30 /11 /novembre /2014 08:45
Map: Islamic State's Growing Sphere of Influence

Map: Islamic State's Growing Sphere of Influence


November 18, 2014 By Mirco Keilberth, Juliane von Mittelstaedt and Christoph Reuter


Chaos, disillusionment and oppression provide the perfect conditions for Islamic State. Currently, the Islamist extremists are expanding from Syria and Iraq into North Africa. Several local groups have pledged their allegiance.


The caliphate has a beach. It is located on the Mediterranean Sea around 300 kilometers (186 miles) south of Crete in Darna. The eastern Libya city has a population of around 80,000, a beautiful old town and an 18th century mosque, from which the black flag of the Islamic State flies. The port city is equipped with Sharia courts and an "Islamic Police" force which patrols the streets in all-terrain vehicles. A wall has been built in the university to separate female students from their male counterparts and the disciplines of law, natural sciences and languages have all been abolished. Those who would question the city's new societal order risk death.

Darna has become a colony of terror, and it is the first Islamic State enclave in North Africa. The conditions in Libya are perfect for the radical Islamists: a disintegrating state, a location that is strategically well situated and home to the largest oil reserves on the continent. Should Islamic State (IS) manage to establish control over a significant portion of Libya, it could trigger the destabilization of the entire Arab world.

The IS puts down roots wherever chaos reigns, where governments are weakest and where disillusionment over the Arab Spring is deepest. In recent weeks, terror groups that had thus far operated locally have quickly begun siding with the extremists from IS.

In September, it was the Algerian group Soldiers of the Caliphate that threw in its lot with Islamic State. As though following a script, the group immediately beheaded a French mountaineer and uploaded the video to the Internet. In October, the "caliphate" was proclaimed in Darna. And last week, the strongest Egyptian terrorist group likewise announced its affiliation with IS.


The Latest Label of Horror

Several inconsequential groups have also pledged loyalty to Islamic State, while others have gone so far as to announce their support for the group, such as Boko Haram in Nigeria, Abu Sayyaf in the Philippines and the Taliban in Pakistan. All of them are seeking to benefit from the attraction and the brutal reputation of the Islamic State, in addition to the weapons, money and fighters that are easier to assemble using the latest label of horror.

Many such groups once joined al-Qaida for similar reasons, but Osama bin Laden's forces have long-since become overshadowed by IS. Whereas al-Qaida was an ideological establishment with far-flung franchises, Islamic State seeks to exert control over entire regions, led by Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the so-called "caliph."

Now, Tunisia of all places, the birthplace of the Arab Spring, has supplied the largest number of foreign jihadists to Islamic State. Many in the country are deeply disappointed with the new freedoms they now possess, and Islamists have also long been able to recruit new followers in Tunisia. In Egypt, where a new military dictatorship took control following the revolution, radical terror organizations have sprouted. And in Libya, fighting among militia groups has resulted in a complete collapse of state order.

Moreover, Islamists were long persecuted in these countries prior to the deposition of their secular rulers. The result was that for decades, jihadists under the thumb of Hosni Mubarak, Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali and Moammar Gadhafi left their home countries. But now, a few old jihadists and many who recently joined IS in Syria are coming back, and they have thrown their support behind Islamic State.


Darna has long been a radical stronghold, having produced the greatest number of foreign suicide attackers from one single city in Iraq after 2004. Oppression by Gadhafi's security forces made it easy for Islamists to sell the jihad as an alternative to living under a dictatorship and the regime was happy to let them go. Every Islamist who left to fight the Russians or the Americans was one less danger back home.

After Gadhafi was toppled in 2011, many rebels headed for Syria to fight against Bashar Assad. At the same time, the revolution gave birth to several militia groups, not all of which were radical but some leaned Islamist. Extremists subsequently found a foothold in eastern Libya and perpetrated a series of bloody attacks against the police and the army, leading the state to pull back. The extremists remained. Today, Darna is ruled by several militia groups, the most important of which is the Islamic Youth Shura Council, an organization founded in the spring after splintering off from the Libyan terror group Ansar al-Sharia. In Darna, the leaders of Ansar al-Sharia have joined forces with Islamic State while in Benghazi they have not.

Initially, IS emerged in Libya in the form of a group of fighters returning from Syria. The so-called al-Battar Brigade brought Darna under its control by murdering politicians, judges and attorneys -- but also by killing commanders of other militias. Then, in September, an "emir" sent by Islamic State arrived in Darna, a previously little-known Yemenite named Mohammed Abdullah. On Oct. 5, the first meeting was held between the men from the Islamic State and Shura Council leaders, during which they announced their alliance and the founding of Islamic State's "Barka Province." At the end of October, hundreds of citizens publically proclaimed their loyalty to the "caliph."

Afterwards, an activist named Mohamed Batoha asked the predominantly foreign extremists what business they had being in Darna. Two days later, he was shot to death by gunmen in a passing vehicle, just as dozens of other critics had been before him.


'Hardly Different from Syria or Iraq'

"The fight against Gadhafi began in Benghazi on Feb. 17, 2011. But it is here where it will be determined whether the fight against the Islamists will escalate into a conflagration across all of North Africa," says a young activist who asked to remain anonymous. He is one of the few who has the courage to report from Darna. He too has been shot at by the Islamists, and he only barely escaped with his life. Since then, he has been trying to leave, but the extremists have set up roadblocks all around the city. "Eastern Libya is hardly any different from Syria or Iraq," he says.

The militias hunt down everybody who voices criticism, be it even just a comment posted on Facebook. Just last Tuesday, three young anti-IS activists were beheaded on camera in Darna. Suspected criminals are lashed. A murderer was executed in the local football stadium. Islamists are treated no better. The leader of Ansar al-Sharia in Benghazi has been missing ever since he refused to join the "caliphate" -- in all likelihood he was killed. A further militia leader has applied for asylum in Turkey.

The militias operate four camps on the outskirts of the city where they train several hundred foreigners for the fight in Syria. But ever since the Libyan army, under the leadership of General Khalifa Haftar, took over large sections of Benghazi, which had been controlled by Islamists until then, the jihadists have focused their efforts here. Some have even returned from Syria to provide support. They are thought to have established weapons depots in the forested mountains above Darna and to have stored short-range missiles in a warehouse belonging to a textile factory.

Last week, Darna was bombarded for the first time by the air force under General Haftar's control, which is supported by Egypt and the United Arab Emirates. But such strikes will hardly eliminate the Islamists. More plausible is that the bombings will increase the danger that militias, operating independently thus far, will join forces to fight the general's troops -- and will become part of the Islamic State alliance. Last week provided a look at the dangers facing the country. Islamists detonated a series of bombs at state facilities and at the embassies of Egypt and the United Arab Emirates in Tripoli.

Since summer, the Libyan capital has been under the control of an Islamist alliance calling itself "Fajr Libya" -- Dawn Libya. The group doesn't belong to Islamic State, but the route to the "caliphate" nevertheless runs through Tripoli. In August, Fajr Libya took control of Mitiga Airport in Tripoli, leaving the terminal in ruins and destroyed jets at the gates. A plastic tarp hanging over the entrance reads "International Airport Tripoli." And Mitiga is an international airport, even if there is essentially only a single destination: the "caliphate."

Flights originating in Mitiga are not allowed to land in many cities, but there are several flights weekly to Istanbul and Casablanca. "Libya is the hub for Islamists from Europe and North Africa," says a Libyan activist who escaped to Tunis. The Jihad route leads from Tunisia via Tripoli into Turkey and on to Syria. Thousands have followed the path into Syria, and only a few have returned.


Mohammed Soussi, from Tunis, is one of those who traveled the Jihad route. Soussi, 27, holds a degree in economic science and had never been particularly devout. The soldier, who had served his country for two years, recently called his parents. But he placed his call from Turkey. "I am fighting for the Islamic State," he said, "for the liberation of Palestine and against Bashar Assad."

Taoufik Soussi, a 63-year-old retired military officer, has reconstructed the path his son took and he now knows where everything got started: in the Elmanar Mosque not far from the technical university in Tunis. Mohammed met an imam there who told him about the Islamic State and who ultimately paid his fare for a collective taxi, which took him to the Libyan border. Fighters with an Islamist militia from Sabratha were waiting on the other side, part of the Ansar al-Sharia network. Presumably, they brought Mohammed to Sabratha, as they had many other Tunisians, and spent several weeks training him for the fight in Syria. They then took him to Mitiga Airport.

According to government figures, 2,400 Tunisians have traveled to Syria, though other estimates place the number of people from Tunisia fighting for the al-Nusra Front or IS at 3,000. The Interior Ministry claims that a further 8,000 men have been prevented from traveling to Syria. Some potential jihadists were identified because they only possessed a one-way ticket to Istanbul while others were arrested at the Libyan border. Some 400 men have returned from Syria, according to government statistics, with most of them now in prison.

Tunisia is the country where the Arab Spring got its start. And while dictators or chaos have followed uprisings in Egypt, Syria and Libya, Tunisia has since held two parliamentary elections. Just recently, there was a peaceful transfer of power from the moderate Islamist party Ennahda to the secular party Nidaa Tounes. On average, the Tunisian population of 11 million is better educated than the people in almost any other county in the region. Why, then, do so many people from this country join the jihad?


Horrific Inventions

The imam who recruited Mohammed Soussi -- and who wishes to remain anonymous -- says: "The Islamic State is our promised land," a state "in which Muslims have wrested back their dignity." Stories about IS fighters killing fellow Muslims and raping women, he says, are merely horrific inventions of the Western media.

Many Tunisians are prepared to believe him. For them, the fight against Assad -- or at least the struggle they see as being that -- is merely a continuation of their own, incomplete revolution. The conditions that moved the street vendor Mohamed Bouazizi to light himself on fire -- the event on Dec. 17, 2010 which triggered the Tunisian revolt -- are still present. Many have yet to benefit from the country's newfound freedoms and the police are just as brutal as they have always been. Furthermore, one-third of all men with a university degree are unemployed and those lucky enough to have a job hardly earn enough to make ends meet. They are confronted with a choice: wait years for a job in Tunisia, jump on a rickety ship bound for Europe or join the jihad in Syria.

"Islamic State propaganda promises a fight for liberation similar to many Latin American movements in the 1970s," says Ahmed Naifar, who teaches religious studies at Zitouna University in Tunis. He believes that frustrated young Tunisians see the trip to Syria as a kind of revolt against corruption, brutality and daily indignities. It is a mood that is prevalent in many countries that experienced Arab Spring revolts.

Indeed, within the "caliphate" there are even proper Tunisian exile communities. They update their friends back home using Facebook and Twitter and they paint a picture of the good life, complete with their own homes, wives and monthly incomes. That is what attracts many to join, not the fighting, which many Tunisians have no use for. Indeed, the "caliphate" has become so popular that its leaders can choose who they would like to accept. They post "help-wanted" ads on Facebook for oil engineers, mechanics and translators.

Computer expert Hamsa Bin Ekbel, for example, was supposed to organize workshops in Syria for European jihadists. Most of them hardly speak any Arabic, but they and the videos they appear in are vital for Islamic State propaganda. That kind of work is also about the only thing Ekbel had to offer: He is paralyzed from the waist down and sits in a wheelchair. Hamsa was looking for recognition, says his brother Mohammed Bin Ekbel, and he was welcomed when he arrived in Syria.


A Desire to Build Up the 'Caliphate'

But his enthusiasm for Islamic State didn't last long. And after the propaganda success of recruiting the "wheelchair jihad," Hamsa Bin Ekbel quickly became a nuisance. The problems began with the fact that he needed three helpers, given that the "caliphate" isn't exactly amenable to wheelchairs. He edited a few videos before his Sudanese commander suggested it might be best if he returned home.

After just a few weeks, he was back home in Tunis. Hamsa Bin Ekbel only agreed to a short interview out of his fear that he will be arrested, but his desire to help build up the "caliphate" remains. "The society that is developing there is more just than capitalism and democracy," he says. "In Raqqa, there is a consumer protection authority which monitors hygiene in the slaughter houses, garbage is collected and buses are on time."

Hamsa Bin Ekbel was luckier than Mohammed Soussi, the young soldier.

This June, eight months after his disappearance, Taoufik Soussi received a second phone call from Syria. "Your son is now a martyr. You can be proud of him," said the man on the other end of the line. Mohammed, the caller said, was injured by an al-Nusra Front rocket attack and taken to a hospital in Turkey, where he died. He was buried in Syria.

Soussi's mourning father and Hamsa Bin Ekbel's brother have now founded RATTA, the Rescue Association of Tunisians Trapped Abroad, which now attends to around 150 families. They don't have sufficient money for an office so they meet in a café to watch the most recent IS videos. Mohammed Bin Ekbel clicks on a YouTube video from Kobani, where many Tunisians are fighting on behalf of Islamic State. He recognizes one of the fighters from other films; his family has asked RATTA for help bringing their son home. "No chance," Ekbel says quietly.


A Shot to the Head

But they hope to at least bring home those who have become disillusioned. Once they arrive in Syria, many realize that IS spends more time fighting against other rebel groups than they do against the regime. Some 300 fighters interested in returning home have turned themselves in to Syrian troops and have been arrested, Ekbel says.

The two activists blame the Ennahda government for having done too little to stop the jihad tourism. The moderate Islamist party seemed to believe they could control and moderate the radicals, but instead, they unwittingly strengthened the extremists, with their imams taking control of over 1,100 mosques that had previously been run by the secular regime.

Even in the 1980s, Tunisians joined the jihad in Afghanistan. The Tunisian Abu Ayyat, for example, was a comrade of Osama bin Laden's before being arrested and deported in 2003, only to be released after the revolution whereupon he founded Ansar al-Sharia. In 2012, the group attacked the US Embassy in Tunisia before murdering two opposition politicians in 2013. Only after that did the Tunisian government declare the group a terrorist organization. By then, however, the group had already send hundreds, if not thousands, of men to Syria.

In March 2012, the government banned men under 35 from traveling to Turkey and Syria and security officials stepped up efforts to combat radicals. Now, fewer men are making the trip to Syria, leading officials to focus their attentions on the radicalized returnees. Those suspected of having participated in the fighting are imprisoned. But it will be difficult to keep tabs on all jihadists. And what happens when men like Abu Jihad return?

The name refers to a Tunisian man of around 30 who is a member of the notorious IS "military police" -- and can be seen in one video killing several prisoners with a shot to the head.


Since last month, the "Sinai Province" has also been part of the "caliphate." There, Egypt's most radical terror group proclaimed its loyalty to Islamic State: Ansar Bait al-Maqdis, whose name essentially means "supporters of Jerusalem." For IS, the Sinai Peninsula is important both symbolically as well as strategically. Egypt is the most populous Arab country as well as being the historically the most important -- and Sinai borders on Israel, the Suez Canal, the Mediterranean Sea and the Red Sea, making it useful as a launch pad for terror attacks in Israel and Cairo and on Western tourists.

Ansar Bait al-Makdis also emerged out of the vacuum created by the collapse of the Mubarak regime and since the military putsch in July 2013, the group has carried out dozens of attacks killing hundreds of police officers and soldiers. For months, the group discussed a possible alignment with IS, with emissaries traveling back and forth. Mohammed Haydar Zammar is thought to be one of the IS leaders who has been negotiating with the Sinai terrorist group since the beginning of the year.

A naturalized German citizen of Syrian origin, Zammar belonged to the Hamburg cell of Mohammed Atta. Following the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks, Zammar was picked up by the CIA and taken to Syria, where Germany's foreign intelligence agency, the BND, participated in his interrogation. In early 2014, he was released in a prisoner exchange orchestrated by the Syrian rebel group Ahrar al Sham. "But days later, he simply disappeared," a negotiation leader told SPIEGEL. "He immediately went to the IS in Raqqa. He had likely planned it beforehand." Zammar is thought to have organized money transfers to Sinai and he is presumed to be in the region as well, say sources close to him. Were that true, it would be an indication that IS directly finances and controls local groups.



Conditions in the Sinai are perfect for Islamic State: It is bitterly poor, largely lawless, a hub of drug, weapons and human trafficking, and it is populated by Bedouins, who oppose the government in Cairo. But moderate Islamists and regime critics across Egypt make for attractive IS targets: They are brutally oppressed by the Egyptian military and many of them are in prison.

Or they are disillusioned men like Ahmed al-Darawi. A 36-year-old former policeman and father of two, he supported the Egyptian revolution. In 2012, he was even a candidate in the elections as a convinced democrat, full of hope for a better future.

But disappointed by the revolt and by the return of the military regime, Darawi radicalized and flew to Turkey last year before joining a rebel group in Syria that later pledged loyalty to Islamic State. Not long later, he blew himself up in Iraq -- a suicide bomber from the Arab Spring.

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24 septembre 2014 3 24 /09 /septembre /2014 11:45
Le 1er Carthage CyberDefense Forum le 9 octobre à Tunis
21 septembre 2014


AlliaCERT et Securinets organisent la 1ère édition du Carthage CyberDefense Forum (CCDF) le jeudi 9 octobre 2014, à Tunis.


Le CCDF se donne our mission de développer une démarche de réflexion et d'échanges réunissant l'ensemble des acteurs du monde de la cyber-sécurité en Tunisie et de décloisonner le débat sur la cyber-sécurité.


Suite de l'article

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18 septembre 2014 4 18 /09 /septembre /2014 11:45
Opération anti-terroriste dans la région de Mazreg Shams (Tunisie)




Les ministères de l’Intérieur et de la Défense nationale ont indiqué aujourd’hui, 17 septembre 2014, dans un communiqué commun, que les unités spéciales de l’armée et de la Garde nationale ont mené une opération dans la région de Mazreg Shams (gouvernorat de Kasserine), en se basant sur des informations précises.


L’opération a permis l’élimination de deux terroristes : Un des deux terroristes a été blessé et a pris la fuite en direction d’une maison de la région. Ce dernier a refusé de se rendre, a indiqué le communiqué.


L’opération d’identification de l’identité des deux terroristes est en cours. Les premiers éléments indiquent qu’il s’agit de terroristes d’origine étrangère.


Les unités ont saisi deux Kalachnikov, une quantité de munition et des grenades. Deux individus accusés de soutenir les terroristes ont été arrêtés aussi lors de cette opération.

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2 septembre 2014 2 02 /09 /septembre /2014 16:45
Tunisia receives donated US patrol boats


01 September 2014 by defenceWeb


The United States has donated two 13.5 metre patrol boats to the Tunisian Navy and will provide seven additional 7.6 metre patrol boats to the country in the next six months to enhance maritime security in the face of terrorism concerns in the region.


The two patrol boats were handed over at La Goulette naval base during a ceremony on August 28 attended by US Ambassador Jake Walles, Minister of Defence Ghazi Jeribi, and Vice Admiral Mohamed Khamassi.


The US embassy said the two vessels - valued at over $2 million - are part of an ongoing programme of assistance to the Tunisian Navy. The United States previously donated five 7.6 metre boats in August 2013.


The new vessels will enable the Tunisian Navy to enhance its maritime security in the face of growing concerns about terrorism in the region. At the same time, the boats will enable Tunisia to better police its exclusive economic zone and guarantee the flow of maritime traffic through this key waterway between North Africa and Europe.


“The US and Tunisia share the common objective of enhancing the operational effectiveness of the Tunisian armed forces in the fight against terrorism. The US Africa Command (AFRICOM) is developing a variety of ways to assist the Tunisian military accomplish this through the sharing of information, the expansion of training, and the supply of advanced equipment. These modern patrol boats highlight the Embassy’s work with the Tunisian Navy, but the U.S. continues to work with the Army and the Air Force as well. Through joint efforts by the three services, combined with those of the Ministry of Interior’s security forces and the country’s international partners, Tunisia can achieve the level of security that its citizens demand and that will be required to conduct successful elections this fall,” the US Embassy said.


Last month the United States announced it was giving Tunisia $60 million worth of military aid to help it fight Islamist militants who are threatening the country's nascent democracy. Speaking after talks with Prime Minister Mehdi Jomaa, General David Rodriguez, the head of US Africa Command, said some of the money would go on equipment to detect improvised explosive devices, new boats and training.


Also last month, the US donated ten tonnes of protective equipment including helmets, shields and bullet proof vests to equip the special counter-terrorism units of the Tunisian military and police as they battle a growing local and regional terrorist threat.


The United States in July gave approval for the sale of 12 Sikorsky UH-60M Black Hawk helicopters to Tunisia, worth $700 million including equipment, parts, training and logistical support. The UH-60M Black Hawk is the most advanced model of the UH-60/S-70 series, and features the ability to be armed with rockets and missiles. Tunisia has requested Battlehawk kits that effectively turn the aircraft into attack helicopters with 2.75 in laser guided rockets, Hellfire missiles, 7.62 mm and .50 cal machineguns, and thermal imagers and laser designators.


Tunisia’s air force recently ordered two stretched C-130J-30 Super Hercules transport aircraft from Lockheed Martin – the first African order for the type.


It is assumed that the armed UH-60Ms will be used against militant groups operating in Tunisia such as Ansar al Sharia and al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb. Tunisia is struggling to deal with the rise of conservative Islamist movements and militants since the 2011 revolt that ousted autocrat Zine El-Abidine Ben Ali and opened the way to democracy.


Tunisia is one of the main sources of Islamist militants travelling from North Africa to fight with radical groups in Iraq and Syria.


Apart from the United States, Italy has provided assistance to the Tunisian Navy and National Guard, supplying 12 patrol boats in an attempt to curb the flow of immigrants from North Africa. In terms of the deal, Italy is supplying six P270TN patrol boats for the Tunisian Navy and six P350TNs for the National Guard, all of them built by Cantiere Naval Vittoria (CNV) in Adria. Five P350TNs and three P270TNs have been delivered, with the first being supplied in December 2012. Another two P270TNs will be delivered by October while the remaining P350TN and P270TN (originally options) will be delivered by February 2015.

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16 juillet 2014 3 16 /07 /juillet /2014 07:45
Morocco goes on high alert over terror threats


14 July 2014 defenceWeb


Morocco has put its security services on high alert after intelligence reports revealed a "serious terror threat" from Islamist militants returning home after fighting in Iraq and Syria, the government said.


Hundreds of fighters from Morocco and other Maghreb states like Tunisia and Algeria have joined Islamist-dominated fighters in Syria's civil war and the insurgency in Iraq, and North African governments fear they will perpetrate attacks once they return.


"The threats are linked to the increasing numbers of Moroccans belonging to organisations in Syria and Iraq," said a statement issued after the weekly cabinet meeting. "Many of these fighters, including some who are leading those organisations, don't hide their willingness to perpetrate terrorist attacks against our country."


An al Qaeda offshoot now calling itself the Islamic State has proclaimed a "caliphate" on territory it has seized in Iraq and Syria after a lightning advance last month.


Moroccans fighting with the group have posted videos on social media showing their weapons and promising they will return to create an Islamic state in Morocco.


"We will bring this back to you in the kingdom of Mohammed VI," one militant with a northern Moroccan accent said in a video posted last week, referring to the Moroccan king.


Moroccan authorities say they have dismantled dozens of Islamist militant cells that sent fighters to Syria and Iraq.


"Authorities have arrested around 160 members who returned home," said Abderrahim Ghazali, spokesman for an association of families and former detainees that defends the rights of jailed Islamists. "Most of them have been arrested when their plane landed at Moroccan airports."


The North African kingdom has suffered numerous bomb attacks by suspected Islamist militants, most recently in 2011 in Marrakesh, when a blast in a cafe killed 15 people including 10 foreigners. It was the worst attack in Morocco since 2003, when suicide bombings killed more than 45 people in Casablanca.

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4 juillet 2014 5 04 /07 /juillet /2014 07:45
Four Tunisian soldiers killed in landmine blast


03 July 2014 defenceWeb (Reuters)


Four Tunisian soldiers have been killed in a landmine blast during an operation against Islamist militants in the north of the country, TAP state news agency reported on Wednesday.


Tunisian forces are battling militants from the hardline Islamist group Ansar al Sharia and other al Qaeda-linked fighters, especially since April when they began a new offensive on militant hideouts in the Chaambi mountains bordering Algeria.

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16 mars 2014 7 16 /03 /mars /2014 12:45
Lokman Abou Sakhr

Lokman Abou Sakhr


15 mars 2014 par Youssef -


L’Armée algérienne a annoncé avoir abattu, hier, vendredi 14 mars 2014, sept terroristes dans la région de Tébessa, selon un communiqué du ministère algérien de la Défense. Des terroristes qui étaient en provenance du territoire tunisien cherchant probablement à fuir Jebel Chaâmbi.


Mais pris en étau par les forces algériennes lors des violents accrochages qui ont opposés la Gendarmerie soutenue par l’armée et les terroristes, ces derniers auraient tenté de repasser les frontières vers la Tunisie.


Parmi les sept terroristes abattus, le ministère Algérien de la Défense annonce la mort d’un dangereux individu activement recherché en Algérie et en Tunisie. Il s’agit de Khaled Chaieb alias Lokman Abou Sakhr.


Ce dernier est l’objet d’un avis de recherche qui avait diffusé le 9 janvier dernier par le ministère de l’Intérieur tunisien, mettant en garde contre le terroriste, impliqué dans l'assassinat des soldats et des gardes nationaux tunisiens.


D’après le ministère de l’Intérieur, il s’était infiltré dans la ville de Kasserine après avoir été longtemps retranché à Jebel Chaâmbi où les opérations de ratissage se poursuivent à un rythme soutenu.


Si sa mort est confirmée par l’armée algérienne, cela confirmerait que les mouvements vers l’Algérie, d’éléments terroristes cachés à Jebel Chaâmbi s’intensifient alors que l’Algérie est aux portes d’une élection présidentielle.


Lors de l’opération d’hier, sept armes de type Kalachnikov, deux véhicules touristiques, 3500 cartouches de différents calibres, des moyens de communication et de vision et des grenades ont été récupérés. "Cette opération intervient suite à l’exploitation d’informations faisant état de mouvements de terroristes dans la soirée d’hier et qui ont été localisés, encerclés et éliminés", précise le ministère algérien de la Défense.


Depuis le déclenchement des événements de Jebel Chaâmbi, les Algériens opèrent un strict contrôle et des ratissages minutieux à la frontière avec la Tunisie afin de prévenir toute infiltration d'éléments terroristes vers l'Algérie.

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12 mars 2014 3 12 /03 /mars /2014 21:45
Shoulder-launched anti-aircraft missiles flow abroad from Libya


12 March 2014 defenceWeb (Reuters)


Shoulder-launched anti-aircraft missiles have been trafficked out of Libya to Chad, Mali, Tunisia, Lebanon and likely Central African Republic, with attempts made to send them to Syrian opposition groups, according to a U.N. report on Tuesday.


An independent panel of experts monitoring U.N. sanctions on Libya, that include an arms embargo imposed at the start of the 2011 uprising that ousted leader Muammar Gaddafi, reported that the weapons, known as MANPADs, that were found in Mali and Tunisia "were clearly part of terrorist groups' arsenals."


"Despite efforts by Libya and other countries to account for and secure MANPADs in Libya, Panel sources state that thousands of MANPADs were still available in arsenals controlled by a wide array of non-state actors with tenuous or non-existent links to Libyan national authorities," the experts said in their final report to the U.N. Security Council.


"To date the Panel has documented transfers of Libyan MANPADs and other short range surface to air missiles in ... Chad, Mali, Tunisia, Lebanon and potentially Central African Republic (the latter case still being under investigation)," the experts said.


The fragile Libyan government is struggling to rein in militias that helped oust Gaddafi and now defy state authority. It has little control over its borders and while trying to rebuild its army, analysts say it is not yet a match for battle-hardened militias who ousted Gaddafi in eight-months.


"Over the past three years, Libya has become a primary source of illicit weapons," according to the U.N. report.


The U.N. experts said Libya has been a key source of arms for Syria opposition groups due to "popular sympathies for the Syrian opposition, large available stockpiles of weapons, the lack of law enforcement and a new generation of domestic arms dealers who appeared during the Libyan uprising."


"Sources indicated to the Panel that the Syrian Arab Republic is also becoming a source of onward proliferation itself, including to Iraq and Lebanon," according to the report, which covers the past year.


The panel said that weapons found aboard a ship, the Letfallah II, when it was seized by Lebanese authorities in 2012 "proved there had been attempts to transfer MANPADs to the Syrian opposition from Libya."




Under the arms embargo the Libyan government must notify the U.N. Security Council Libya sanctions committee of any weapons purchases it intends to make.


"The Panel has reason to believe that some transfers of arms and ammunition have taken place since the end of the revolution in violation of the arms embargo," the experts said. "Those transfers undermine the effort of the Libyan authorities to build an accountable and transparent procurement process."


Libya's U.N. envoy Ibrahim Dabbashi said on Monday that "any request for approval for exporting weapons to Libya that is not done via the Libyan mission at the U.N. or with the knowledge of this mission would be considered a request from a party that does not belong to the Libyan government."


A year ago the U.N. Security Council made it easier for Libya to obtain non-lethal equipment such as bulletproof vests and armored cars but expressed concern at the spread of weapons from the country to nearby states.


The U.N. experts expressed concern about arms flowing into the civilian market in Libya in violation of the arm embargo. The report found that a number of shops openly sell small arms and that weapons on display were brand new.


"Retailers explained that most of the materiel was procured for Turkey because of low prices," said the experts, adding that Turkey was investigating the claims. "New guns are also advertised on Facebook pages dedicated to trade between private individuals."


Facebook Inc and its photo sharing subsidiary, Instagram, announced last week that they will delete posts offering to buy or sell guns without background checks.


"Handguns and related ammunition are still the weapon of choice," according to the report. "Importing such materiel is therefore a lucrative business and seizures bound for Libya made in 2013 clearly reflect that trend."


The full Panel of Experts report can be seen here

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12 mars 2014 3 12 /03 /mars /2014 12:45
Tunisie – Le ministère de la défense confirme la présence de militaires US en Tunisie


11 mars, 2014


Le porte-parole du ministère de la Défense, le colonel major Taoufik Rahmouni, a confirmé l’information rapportée par le « Los Angeles Times » en rapport avec le débarquement d’éléments des forces spéciales américaines arrivés par hélicoptère dans une base militaire dans le Sud de la Tunisie.

Il a cependant annoncé qu’ils ne sont aucunement au nombre de 50.

Le porte-parole a souligné que cette présence rentre dans le cadre d’un programme de formation et d’entraînement commun, et d’échange d’expériences et de visites entre le ministère de la Défense et le Pentagone , et que les éléments débarqués ne sont qu’une unité mobile spécialisée dans l’entraînement militaire.

Le colonel major Rahmouni a démenti catégoriquement toutes les « allégations » liant ces informations à une supposée installation d’une base militaire américaine dans le Sud tunisien ».

Le journal américain avait affirmé que l’opération de débarquement s’inscrit dans le cadre d’un accord entre les deux ministère de la Défense portant sur l’entraînement de militaires tunisiens en matière de techniques de lutte contre le terrorisme dans le but de former une élite de militaires tunisiens spécialisés dans l’anticipation des plans tactiques des terroristes.

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4 février 2014 2 04 /02 /février /2014 20:45
Terrorisme : Une journée pas comme les autres à Raoued (Tunisie)



4-02-2014 Wiem Thebti - AfricanManager


Le terrorisme vivrait ses dernières heures en Tunisie , et l’opération de Raoued qui a pris fin, ce mardi en début d’après-midi, semble lui asséner les ultimes coups de grâce, marquant sans doute un tournant dans l’approche mise en branle pour l’ extirper du territoire national.


L’opération qui a fait 7 morts parmi les terroristes qui se sont barricadés dans une villa de la région de Raoued Plage, proche de la capitale Tunis, n’a cependant pas permis de capturer vifs les membres du groupe terroriste, ce qui aurait permis d’en savoir davantage sur leur organisation, leur logistique , les complicités dont ils bénéficiaient et sur les financements qui soutiennent leurs menées.


Notre reporter Wiem Thebti était sur place pour rendre compte de l’assaut final lancé par les forces de sécurité. Reportage :


Nous étions obligés d’attendre avant d’accéder à la zone touristique de Gammarth. Plusieurs membres de la sécurité en ont bloqué le passage. Ils nous ont demandé d'ouvrir la voiture avant de nous permettre d'y entrer.


Tout a commencé hier après-midi, à la zone de Raoued, dans la proche banlieue de Tunis, à 1 km de la Plage ou des échanges de coups de feu avaient eu lieu entre les forces spéciales et des terroristes lourdement armés retranchés dans une maison.


La zone était placée en état d'alerte. En outre, Tous les accès menant à Raoued ont été fermées aux civils, que ce soit du côté de la cité Ghazala ou du côté de Gammarth, à la périphérie de la zone touristique et des hôtels.


Des renforts sécuritaires importants se sont déployés sur place, notamment au niveau de l’hôtel Phébus à la limite de la zone touristique de Gammarth. La plupart d'agents présents sur les lieux, se montrent désormais plus prudents. Certains ne cachent pas leur crainte concernant cette opération, jugée difficile, délicate et chargée de dangers.


Ceci a poussé le ministère de l'Intérieur à enjoindre aux médias de " ne pas diffuser d'informations en lien avec des opérations sécuritaires et militaires en cours afin de garantir leur succès", et à "ne pas donner de détails pour protéger les unités sécuritaires et militaires sur le terrain".


Un caporal et 7 terroristes tués


Les forces engagées dans l'opération comprennent les brigades spéciales de la Garde Nationale et la BAT des forces des interventions.


Après des longues heures d’attente, Mohamed Ali Laroui, le porte-parole du MI nous a rejoints, vers 14h00, pour annoncer la fin de l'opération antiterroriste de Raouad.


Il a, dans ce contexte, précisé que les échanges de tirs ont fait finalement sept morts parmi les éléments terroristes et un martyr parmi les agents de la Garde nationale. Un agent de l’unité spéciale de la Garde nationale, et un autre de la Brigade antiterroriste ont été, par ailleurs blessés.


La police technique a procédé au prélèvement de leur ADN pour les identifier de manière formelle , a-t-il souligné ajoutant que la maison est infestée d’explosifs et les services compétents s'appliquent à les désamorcer.


Pour la mort de Kamel Gaghgadhi, impliqué dans l’assassinat de Chokri Belaïd et de Mohamed Brahmi, information qui a fait couler beaucoup d’encre, des sources sécuritaires et judiciaires ont confié à la presse que les analyses ADN effectuées sur les sept corps transportés à l’hôpital Charles Nicole, auraient confirmé la présence de Kamel Gadhgadhi parmi les terroristes impliqués dans la fusillade avec les unités spéciales de la Garde nationale à Raoued.


Les mêmes sources ont relevé que Kamel Gadhgadhi serait parmi les deux terroristes qui ont fait sauter leurs ceintures explosives, juste après l’assaut donné par les forces de sécurité.


De grandes quantité d’armes, d’explosifs et de munitions ont été saisies dans cette maison et faisaient déjà l’objet de minutieuses investigations, ont-elles ajouté.


L’opération de Raoued aura un effet positif


Interrogé par nos soins sur l’effet de cette opération, le colonel-major à la retraite, Mokhtar Ben Nasser a fait remarquer que l'opération menée par les forces de sécurité contre le groupe terroriste à Raouad était préparée, depuis longtemps, et elle est le fruit d'un travail de renseignement qui s’est poursuivi pendant des mois. « Cette opération va avoir un effet très positif sur la lutte contre le terrorisme, en empêchant les mouvements des groupes terroristes et surtout les contacts entre eux », a souligné Ben Nasser assurant que les forces de sécurité ont une vision plus claire sur les moyens, le mode opératoire et les plans des terroristes, ce qui facilite le combat mené contre ces groupes.


Une déclaration qui a l’heur de rassurer les Tunisien qui ont souffert depuis l’avènement de la révolution, du fait de l’émergence de groupuscules islamistes armés. Ce fléau n’a pas cessé de préoccuper les pouvoirs en place ainsi que l’ensemble des acteurs et composantes de la société civile, particulièrement en 2013, une année qui a été endeuillée par l’assassinat d’une vingtaine de militaires et de membres des forces de l'ordre, et ce , lors d'affrontements avec des djihadistes présumés. Pis, deux attentats suicides déjoués ont visé des sites touristiques, en octobre dernier.

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4 février 2014 2 04 /02 /février /2014 17:45
François Hollande donnera-t-il un coup de pouce à Airbus Helicopters en Tunisie ?

Le constructeur européen tente depuis plusieurs mois de vendre six EC725 Caracal à Tunis destinés aux forces spéciales pour un montant de 300 millions d'euros environ


04/02/2014 Michel Cabirol –


La visite du président français en Tunisie pourrait faire avancer un des dossiers export d'Airbus Helicopters. Le constructeur souhaite vendre six EC725 Caracal aux forces armées tunisiennes.


La visite de François Hollande en Tunisie prévue vendredi pourrait faire avancer un des dossiers importants d'Airbus Helicopters. Le constructeur européen tente depuis plusieurs mois de vendre six EC725 Caracal à Tunis destinés aux forces spéciales pour un montant de 300 millions d'euros environ. "Le Figaro" avait révélé l'information en novembre dernier. Selon nos informations, le Caracal est le premier appareil sur la liste des Tunisiens. "Ils en ont besoin", explique-t-on à "La Tribune". Il serviront dans des opérations anti-terroristes.


En 2013, Airbus Helicopters a vendu 33 appareils dans la famille de Super Puma/Cougar (EC725/EC225) et 37 en 2012. La filiale d'Airbus Group a enregistré l'année dernière 422 prises de commandes contre 469 en 2012, mais ses livraisons ont progressé de près de 5 %, à 497 unités contre 475 l'année précédente.


Un appareil multimissions


L'EC725 est un hélicoptère destiné à accomplir des missions de recherche et de sauvetage en zone de combat, de transport de troupes sur longue distance et des missions spéciales. Il intègre des équipements spécifiques pour ce type de missions, tel que le ravitaillement en vol, un système de contre-mesures, une caméra infrarouge ou des instruments de localisation d'un pilote éjecté.


Hélicoptère biturbine de la classe des 11 tonnes, l'EC725 est le premier hélicoptère français équipé d'un système d'autoprotection complet, de visualisation par écran LCD et d'un blindage.

Il est aussi capable d'accomplir des missions de sauvetage en mer.

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1 décembre 2013 7 01 /12 /décembre /2013 21:45
Tunisie : Des experts favorables à l’augmentation des budgets de la Défense et de l’Intérieur


30 nov 2013 Par : Di avec TAP


Des experts sécuritaires et militaires ont favorablement accueilli l’augmentation des budgets des ministères de la Défense et de l’Intérieur, programmée dans le projet de budget de l’Etat au titre de 2014.


Badra Gaaloul, experte en réforme de la sécurité a mis en évidence l’importance de cette mesure dans la lutte contre la recrudescence de la violence et du terrorisme qui secouent le pays depuis quelques temps.


Le projet de budget de l’Etat pour l’exercice 2014 prévoit une hausse de 136 millions de dinars pour le MI et de 305 millions de dinars pour la Défense. Les deux institutions souffrent d’un manque criant en matériels pendant que les groupes terroristes se munissent d’équipements et d’armes sophistiqués, a-t-elle dit.


Les pertes en vies humaines dans les rangs des militaires et des forces de l’ordre, enregistrées au cours de la dernière période, sont attribuables au manque d’équipements et à l’absence de planification préalable des interventions sur le terrain, a-t-elle regretté.


La lutte contre le terrorisme, a encore ajouté Mme Gaaloul, nécessite en plus de la logistique, la mise sur pied de stratégies dans le court et le moyen terme pour affronter les dangers qui guettent le pays.


Mokhtar Ben Nasr, colonel major, retraité et expert militaire estime que l’augmentation du budget du ministère de la Défense est « raisonnable », faisant observer que l’acquisition d’équipements lourds à l’instar des avions demande de plus grandes ressources matérielles. Une partie du budget du ministère de la Défense sera allouée à l’achat d’équipements ordinaires, a-t-il poursuivi.


Ben Nasr a formé l’espoir de voir le budget du département alimenté dans les années à venir et une fois la crise économique que vit le pays surmontée.


Pour sa part, l’expert en réforme de la sécurité Haykel Ben Mahfoudh considère que l’accroissement du budget des deux ministères est « attendue », dans la mesure où des majorations salariales ont été décidées au profit des employés des deux départements. Pour lui les institutions sécuritaire et militaire comptent parmi les ministères qui emploient le plus de personnel, appelant à, cet égard, à rationaliser les recrutements en garantissant l’équilibre entre les agents et les cadres dans le sens d’un encadrement efficace.


Ben Mahfoudh a estimé que les défis de l’étape commandent de maximiser l’efficacité opérationnelle des deux institutions moyennant le renforcement des équipements et des ressources humaines spécialisées et l’instauration de mécanismes favorisant le respect de la loi et des droits humains et la qualité de transparence. D’après lui, le ministère de l’Intérieur ne doit pas axer ses efforts uniquement sur le terrorisme, mais se doit aussi de garantir la sécurité publique et les commodités de base fournies par les collectivités locales.


Pour sa part, le président du Centre tunisien des études de la sécurité globale, Nasr Ben Soltana a estimé que l’augmentation des budgets de la Défense et de l’Intérieur est en rapport avec la situation sécuritaire dans le pays et la protection des frontières. Cette augmentation est justifiée par la situation actuelle que traverse le pays face aux menaces qui guettent la sécurité et la stabilité de la Tunisie, a-t-il soutenu.


Selon Nasr Ben Soltana, l’appareil sécuritaire et militaire doit être conforté par des moyens matériels et humains importants pour faire face au terrorisme et au crime organisé et pour assurer la protection de ses frontières par des dispositifs technologiques sophistiqués.


Ben Soltana écarte l’idée selon laquelle l’augmentation des budgets de la Défense et de l’Intérieur est une manière d’instaurer une nouvelle dictature. « Tout Etat démocratique augmente son budget de défense s’il est exposé à la menace terroriste », a-t-il dit.


Le budget du ministère de l’Intérieur dans le projet de budget de l’Etat 2014 qui a été soumis à L’Assemblée nationale constituante, s’élève à 2279 MD contre 2143 MD en 2013. Le budget du ministère de la Défense est estimé à 1538 MD contre 1233 en 2013.

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6 novembre 2013 3 06 /11 /novembre /2013 13:45
Vers une augmentation des budgets de l'Intérieur et de la Défense (Tunisie)


04 Novembre 2013


    Le projet du budget de l'Etat pour l'exercice 2014 prévoit une augmentation des budgets des ministères de l'Intérieur (136 millions de dinars, de la Défense (305 MDT) et de la présidence du gouvernement (11 MDT), selon une copie parvenue à l'agence TAP.


    Le projet du budget 2014, adopté mercredi 30 octobre 2013, par le conseil des ministres, révèle, en outre, une progression d'un million de dinars des budgets de la présidence de la République et de la présidence du gouvernement. Le budget alloué au ministère de l'intérieur atteindra 2.279 MDT contre 2143 en 2013.


    Au titre de l'exercice 2014, le ministère de la défense nationale gérera un budget de 1538 MDT, contre 1233 MDT en 2013, précise le document.


    Ces hausses inscrites dans le cadre du budget de l'Etat 2014 interviennent à la lumière d'une conjoncture caractérisée par une recrudescence de la violence et du terrorisme et l'appel lancé par plusieurs partis politiques et composantes de la société civile concernant la nécessité d'augmenter les budgets des deux ministères (intérieur et défense).


    Une partie de ces augmentations sera consacrée à l'acquisition des moyens et équipements nécessaires. Le budget de la présidence de la République pour l'exercice 2014 atteindra 80,142 millions de dinars, contre 79,488 millions de dinars en 2013.


    A rappeler que le budget de la présidence de la République pour l'année 2013, débattu au cours du mois de décembre 2012, n'a pas été adopté par l'ANC et a été réduit après avoir été revu par les commissions relevant de l'ANC. Le budget de la présidence du gouvernement est passé de 138,401 millions de dinars en 2013 à 149,142 millions de dinars pour l'exercice 2014.


    Selon le même document, la présidence de l'ANC gérera, en 2014, un budget de 26 millions 14 mille dinars contre 25 millions 488 mille dinars en 2013. Le budget du ministère de l'Industrie occupe la 2ème place pour le même exercice avec 2.920 MDT. En contrepartie, le budget alloué au ministère des Droits de l'Homme et de la Justice transitionnelle baissera de 746.000 dinars, soit 5.917 MDT prévus pour 2014 contre 6.663 MDT en 2013.


    Dans le même cadre, le budget du ministère de l'Emploi et de la Formation professionnelle a baissé d'environ 180 MDT, passant de 850 MDT en 2013 à 670 MDT pour l'exercice 2014.


    Le budget de l'Etat pour l'exercice 2014 (recettes et dépenses) est estimé à 28,125 milliards de dinars, soit une hausse de 3,2% par rapport aux prévisions pour 2013.

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