Sfax in Tunisia

26 August 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Union for the Mediterranean Reading Time:  7 minutes

Ksar Berromdhan © El Golli Mohamed/cc-by-sa-4.0

Ksar Berromdhan © El Golli Mohamed/cc-by-sa-4.0

Sfax is a city in Tunisia, located 270 km (170 mi) southeast of Tunis. The city, founded in AD 849 on the ruins of Roman Taparura, is the capital of the Sfax Governorate (about 955,421 inhabitants in 2014), and a Mediterranean port. Sfax has a population of 330,440 (census 2014). The main industries are phosphate, olive and nut processing, fishing (largest fishing port in Tunisia) and international trade. The city is the second-most populous after the capital, Tunis.   read more…

Carthage in Tunisia

28 January 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Museums, Exhibitions, UNESCO World Heritage, Union for the Mediterranean Reading Time:  9 minutes

Reconstruction of Punic Carthage © flickr.com - damian entwistle/cc-by-sa-2.0

Reconstruction of Punic Carthage © flickr.com – damian entwistle/cc-by-sa-2.0

Carthage was the capital city of the ancient Carthaginian civilization, on the eastern side of the Lake of Tunis in what is now Tunisia. Carthage was one of the most important trading hubs of the Ancient Mediterranean and one of the most affluent cities of the classical world. Today Carthage is a posh villa suburb of Tunis, the location of the largest university in the country and the location of the Tunisian presidential palace. The Carthage excavations are one of the most important tourist attractions in Tunisia. Most tour operators offer day trips from the seaside resorts on the Mediterranean coast to Tunis, Carthage and Sidi Bou Said.   read more…

Golf and resort town Hammamet in Tunisia

25 September 2020 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Union for the Mediterranean Reading Time:  7 minutes

Old city of Hammamet © Mahdi Chaker/cc-by-sa-3.0

Old city of Hammamet © Mahdi Chaker/cc-by-sa-3.0

Hammamet is a town in Tunisia. Thanks to its beaches, it is a popular destination for swimming and water sports and is one of the primary tourist destinations in Tunisia. It is located in the south-eastern section of Cap Bon and is part of the Nabeul Governorate. The reported number of inhabitants varies from 100,000 to 400,000 and the population quadruples due to tourists’ arrival in the summer.   read more…

Routes of El legado andalusi/Al-Andalus

4 October 2019 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Architecture, European Union, Living, Working, Building, Palaces, Castles, Manors, Parks, UNESCO World Heritage Reading Time:  10 minutes

© Morningstar1814/cc-by-sa-3.0

© Morningstar1814/cc-by-sa-3.0

In the 8th century, the Iberian Peninsula saw the arrival of Arabs and Berbers who mixed with the Roman-Visigoth inhabitants, engendering what was known as Al-Andalus. This successful medieval Muslim civilisation extended, at its peak, to most of what is today Spain and Portugal, until its downfall in the late 15th century (Reconquista). Today, the importance of Al-Andalus to Western Europe is all too often underestimated, or attempts are made to downplay the effect of this medieval “multicultural” approach on the development of Europe. It was the numerous innovations that the Muslims brought with them (enriched with knowledge from ancient Egypt and ancient China) that gave Europe an unexpected boost in development, both in the sciences and of course in the culinary field. Try depriving Europeans of their morning coffee and you’ll find yourself dealing with an ill-tempered continent. While science and the fine arts were already being established in Al-Andalus, we northern Europeans were still on the move as “uneducated and inhospitable woodworms”. This slowly changed with the spread of knowledge from Al-Andalus to the north. At the same time, one cannot understand today’s Andalusia and its appeal without knowing the impact of Al-Andalus.   read more…

Union for the Mediterranean: Bon voyage!

12 January 2019 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Editorial, European Union, UNESCO World Heritage, Union for the Mediterranean Reading Time:  138 minutes

Union for the Mediterranean © AndrewRT/cc-by-sa-3.0

Union for the Mediterranean © AndrewRT/cc-by-sa-3.0

The Union for the Mediterranean (UfM) is an intergovernmental organization of 43 countries from Europe and the Mediterranean Basin: the 28 member states of the European Union and 15 Mediterranean partner countries from North Africa, the Middle East (the western and middle part of the Middle East & North Africa region (MENA)) and Southeast Europe. It was created in July 2008 at the Paris Summit for the Mediterranean, with a view to reinforcing the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership (Euromed) that was set up in 1995 and known as the Barcelona Process. The Union has the aim of promoting stability and prosperity throughout the Mediterranean region. It is a forum for discussing regional strategic issues, based on the principles of shared ownership, shared decision-making and shared responsibility between the two shores of the Mediterranean. Its main goal is to increase both North-South and South-South integration in the Mediterranean region, in order to support the countries’ socioeconomic development and ensure stability in the region. The actions of the organization fall under three, interrelated priorities—regional human development, regional integration and regional stability. To this end, it identifies and supports regional projects and initiatives of different sizes, to which it gives its label, following a consensual decision among the forty-three countries. The region has 756 million inhabitants and is scenic, architecturally and culturally very diverse. Cities, lakes, mountains, beaches and national parks offer everything that promises fun, recreation and perfect vacations. The cultural offers are numerous. In addition to many UNESCO World Heritage sites, there are numerous galleries, museums, theaters and opera houses. Of course, there are plenty of shopping and entertainment possibilities. However, holiday pleasure is not untroubled in all countries. At present, Syria and Libya in general, Mauritania (Sahara and Sahel) and Lebanon (North Lebanon and the border regions to Syria and Israel), Palestine (Gaza Strip) should be partly avoided. In all other countries of the Levant and North Africa, increased caution, vigilance and prudence are recommended. At the end of each country portrait is a link to the U.S. Department of State, in order to be able to find out about the current security situation on the ground.   read more…

Arab–Israeli and Israeli-Palestinian conflict

6 January 2018 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Editorial, Union for the Mediterranean Reading Time:  1987 minutes

© Oncenawhile

© Oncenawhile

(Latest update: 23 August 2022) The Arab–Israeli conflict is the political tension, military conflicts and disputes between a number of Arab countries and Israel. The roots (European colonial period, Ottoman Empire, widespread Antisemitism in Europe, Jews in the Russian Empire, Baron Edmond James de Rothschild (Jewish land purchase in Palestine), Theodor Herzl, Jewish National Fund (Israel Bonds), timeline of the Israeli–Palestinian conflict, World War I, Sykes–Picot Agreement (San Remo conference, Mandate for Palestine, UN Charter, Chapter XII – International Trusteeship System, Article 80 (commonly known as the “Palestine Article” used by both conflict parties, Israel and Palestine, to create the wildest interpretations, speculations and conspiracy theories to assert the respective alleged right to the total land area), McMahon–Hussein Correspondence), Balfour Declaration, World War II, The Holocaust (International Holocaust Remembrance Day), Évian Conference, Mandatory Palestine, Forced displacement, and United Nations Partition Plan for Palestine) of the modern Arab–Israeli conflict (or the history of collective failure) are bound in the rise of Zionism and Arab nationalism towards the end of the 19th century. Territory regarded by the Jewish people as their historical homeland is also regarded by the Pan-Arab movement as historically and currently belonging to the Palestinians, and in the Pan-Islamic context, as Muslim lands. The sectarian conflict between Palestinian Jews and Arabs emerged in the early 20th century, peaking into a full-scale civil war in 1947 and transforming into the First Arab–Israeli War in May 1948 following the Israeli Declaration of Independence (Nakba and the assassination of UN mediator Folke Bernadotte by the terror organization Lehi/Stern gang. Among them, the later Israeli PM Yitzhak Shamir). Large-scale hostilities mostly ended with the cease-fire agreements after the 1973 Yom Kippur War, Ramadan War, or October War. Peace agreements were signed between Israel and Egypt in 1979, resulting in Israeli withdrawal from the Sinai Peninsula and abolishment of the military governance system in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, in favor of Israeli Civil Administration and consequent unilateral, internationally not recognized, annexation of the Syrian Golan Heights and East Jerusalem. Even when the text is about 556 pages long, it is just a summary. The multitude of links point out that there is a lot more to learn in detail. At first, it is a timeline of the major developments in the region and it leads to today’s challenges. The starting point is the view of the international community, especially the European Union and North America, on the conflict, enriched with excursions into the ideas, convictions, believes, and thoughts of the direct and indirect involved parties to the conflict.   read more…

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Union for the Mediterranean: Bon appétit!

7 November 2017 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Editorial, European Union, Union for the Mediterranean Reading Time:  184 minutes

Union for the Mediterranean © AndrewRT/cc-by-sa-3.0

Union for the Mediterranean © AndrewRT/cc-by-sa-3.0

The Union for the Mediterranean (UfM) is an intergovernmental organization of 43 countries from Europe and the Mediterranean Basin: the 28 member states of the European Union and 15 Mediterranean partner countries from North Africa, the Middle East (the western and middle part of the Middle East & North Africa region (MENA)) and Southeast Europe. It was created in July 2008 at the Paris Summit for the Mediterranean, with a view to reinforcing the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership (Euromed) that was set up in 1995 and known as the Barcelona Process. The Union has the aim of promoting stability and prosperity throughout the Mediterranean region. It is a forum for discussing regional strategic issues, based on the principles of shared ownership, shared decision-making and shared responsibility between the two shores of the Mediterranean. Its main goal is to increase both North-South and South-South integration in the Mediterranean region, in order to support the countries’ socioeconomic development and ensure stability in the region. The actions of the organization fall under three, interrelated priorities—regional human development, regional integration and regional stability. To this end, it identifies and supports regional projects and initiatives of different sizes, to which it gives its label, following a consensual decision among the forty-three countries. The region has 756 million inhabitants and is culinary very diverse (European cuisine, Mediterranean cuisine, Maghreb cuisine, Levantine cuisine, Middle-Eastern cuisine and Arab cuisine).   read more…

Theme Week Tunisia – Monastir

26 August 2017 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Union for the Mediterranean Reading Time:  6 minutes

Al Qurayyah beach © Tabkram

Al Qurayyah beach © Tabkram

Monastir is a city on the central coast, in the Sahel area, It is 20 kilometres (12 miles) south of Sousse and 162 kilometres (101 miles) south of Tunis. Traditionally a fishing port, Monastir is now a major tourist resort. Its population is about 93,000. It is the capital of Monastir Governorate. Monastir enjoys a dry Mediterranean climate with hot summers, extremely mild winters, lots of sunshine and low rainfall year-round. The city sits in the northeast of Tunisia, on its central coast.   read more…

Theme Week Tunisia – Bizerte

25 August 2017 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Union for the Mediterranean Reading Time:  9 minutes

Old Port and Kashba of Bizerte © O.Mustafin

Old Port and Kashba of Bizerte © O.Mustafin

Bizerte, also known in English as Bizerta, is a town of Bizerte Governorate. It is the northernmost city in Africa, located 65 km (40mil) north of the capital Tunis. The city had 143,000 inhabitants in 2014. Bizerte is on a section of widened inlet and east-facing coast of the north coast of Tunisia, 15 kilometres from Ras ben Sakka (the northernmost point in Africa on the Mediterranean Sea), 20 kilometers northeast of the Ichkeul lake (a World Heritage Site), 30 kilometers (18 miles) north of the archaeological site of Utica and 65 kilometers north of Tunis. Bizerte has to the west coastal hills forming an outcrop of the Tell Atlas with well-conserved woods and vantage points. Its associated beaches include Sidi Salem, La Grotte, Rasenjela, and Al Rimel. It is on a section of Mediterranean climate coastline, close to Sardinia and Sicily, as opposed to coasts in the south of the country which have a year-round dry desert climate.   read more…

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