Tunisia’s prime minister has opened a conference on dialogue between religions on the island of Djerba during an annual Jewish pilgrimage that is taking place amid high security.
Prime Minister Youssef Chahed said his North African nation “will remain a land of peace and tolerance,” according to Mosaique radio. He said Tunisians from all religions are “full citizens of this country.”
Soldiers and other security forces were deployed near the 2,500-year-old Ghriba synagogue, which was targeted in a 2002 terrorist attack. The pilgrimage this year gathered about 3,000 pilgrims Wednesday and Thursday, some coming from Israel, France and Italy.
Djerba is home to Tunisia’s main Jewish community.
Last January, two Molotov cocktails were thrown at two synagogues on the island during protests over price hikes. Authorities say the incident wasn’t terror-related.