Tunis, Tunisia closed its border with Libya for a 15-day period on Thursday, two days after a suicide attack in capital Tunis left 13 Presidential Guard personnel dead.
According to a Wednesday statement issued by the Tunisian presidency, the decision to close the border — and to step up surveillance along the two countries’ shared land and maritime borders — was taken at a meeting of the country’s National Security Council.
“We decided to shut the border for security reasons despite the economic impact on the country,” President Mohamed Beji Caid Essebsi declared.
Tunisia’s security council also decided to put an antiterrorism law into effect immediately, increase funds allocated for the country’s security apparatus, and recruit 6,000 new security personnel.
The council further decided to update data related to foreign nationals living in Tunisia, block internet sites linked to alleged terrorist groups, and closely monitor Tunisian nationals returning from conflict zones — such as Syria — in line with the new anti-terrorism legislation.
Immediately following Tuesday’s attack, the Tunisian authorities had declared a 30-day countrywide state of emergency, along with a curfew in the capital and in three other provinces.
The Daesh militant group claimed responsibility for the attack, which occurred in the heart of Tunisia’s capital, killing 13 Presidential Guard personnel and leaving another 24 people injured.
In a statement shared by the group on social-media platforms, Daesh described the attack as a “martyrdom operation.”