DAMASCUS (Dispatches) – Top diplomats of Syria and Tunisia have pledged to enhance the level of diplomatic representation amid a new wave of enhancement of ties between Syria and its Arab neighbors.
Syria’s Foreign Minister Faisal Mekdad held a phone conversation with his Tunisian counterpart Nabil Ammar, exchanging congratulations on the fasting holy month of Ramadan and discussing ways to boost bilateral relations, SANA reported.
Ammar noted that Tunis has decided to strengthen the representation of the Embassy of Tunisia in Damascus and appoint an ambassador to Syria.
For his part, Mekdad appreciated Tunis’s decision, noting that Syria will also re-open its embassy in Tunisia in the coming days with an ambassador as the head of the mission.
The conversation comes as Tunisian President Kais Saied tasked the foreign ministry to “initiate procedures for appointing an ambassador of Tunisia in Damascus,” according to an official statement published on the presidency’s Facebook page.
The statement highlighted the “necessity of adhering to the principles of the foreign policy of the Tunisian diplomacy” and said that the country’s “positions abroad stem from the will of its people.”
Back on March 10, Saied announced the decision to restore diplomatic ties with Syria which were cut off almost a decade ago.
“Nothing can justify the absence of a Tunisian ambassador in Damascus and an ambassador from Syria in Tunis,” he said during a meeting with his country’s foreign affairs minister, according to a video released by the presidential office.
Tunis cut diplomatic relations with Damascus following the start of the foreign-backed war on Syria in 2011.
Tunisia began limited diplomatic links with Syria in 2017, in part to help track more than 3,000 Tunisian militants reportedly fighting in Syria.
However, since Saied took the helm in 2021 and consolidated his power, Tunis has been sending Damascus signals that it is ready to resume full diplomatic ties with it.
Several other Arab countries, including Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Jordan, Oman and the United Arab Emirates, in the past months, have sent similar signals, indicating that they too are prepared to resume ambassador-level diplomatic ties with the Syrian government.
In February, a number of Arab parliament speakers and senior legislators visited Damascus as part of a concerted bid to restore Syria’s membership in the Arab League, more than a decade after it was suspended from the 22-member bloc.
Riyadh is reportedly set to invite President Bashar al-Assad to attend the Arab League summit next month in what has been described by experts as a significant development in the resumption of ties between Damascus and other Arab states.