"I would like to reiterate my support for the establishment of the world solidarity fund which is prompted by the successful experience of the National Solidarity Fund, established by President Ben Ali, and which has allowed Tunisia to bring down the poverty rate to about 4% in the country. I am really delighted to see the UNO take the decision to test out this innovating mechanism at a global level".

Mr March Brown, UNDP Administrator

"The Tunisia destination provides a feeling of security, stability and quiet. Under the leadership of President Ben Ali, this country has genuinely and diligently managed to struggle againt all forms of international terrorism and, amongst others, through its initiatives to give more impetus to the tourism sector".

Mr Francesco Frangially, WTO Secretary General

Tunisia is a constitutional democracy striving to create a more open political society, diversify its economy, attract foreign investment, and improve its diplomatic ties with both the European Union and United States .

Thad Cochran , Mississipi

"President Ben Ali has always adopted a shrewd and thoroughly-studied approach about many questions. I am both impressed and delighted by this attitude".

Mr Zeng Qinghong, Vice-President of the People's Republic of China

"The University of Ancona takes pride in being behind this initiative to award to President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali the Honoris Doctorate in political economics. He is the architect who stands behind this colossal work which has made of Tunisia a highly advanced country in terms of economic development".

Pr Marco Pacetti, Director of the Italian University of Ancona.

One of Tunisia 's most valuable assets has been its continued willingness to further the Middle East peace process. Despite being surrounded by nations engulfed in political turmoil, Tunisia continues to take an active role in fighting terrorism and international unrest.

Hon. Mark Kirk of Illinois in the House of Representatives

"If the University Council of the University of Sassari has decided to pay tribute to one of the most respected political figures, the world over, it is also a message that has been conveyed to tell you how much we admire your wisdom and your support to the world of culture".

Pr Attilio Mastino, President of the Italian University of Sassari

Today, Tunisia stands as an example to developing countries and the promise of North Africa . It has quickly progressed from a country that receives aid to a nation of growing financial influence through its efforts to privatize state owned companies, lifting of price controls and reducing tariffs, reforming the banking and financial sectors, and development of trade in order to create an aggressive free market economy. Today, over sixty percent of the population of Tunisians can be counted in the middle class. We congratulate the country on its progressive social and health programs and most extraordinarily for its leadership in the region as a supporter of women's legal rights.

Tunisia has also become a moderating force in the Middle East peace process, taking an active role within the international community in fighting terrorism, while maintaining internal stability in the face of external chaos.

Hon. Nick J. Rahall II of west Virginia in the House of Representatives

"Under your guidance, Tunisia stands for a model to prompt the rest of the world. This is in addition to being a model for democracy. As far as your policy is concerned, the concept of democracy is part and parcel of the action undertaken in favor of principles calling for the consecration of the constitutional tenets and the values of solidarity and tolerance".

Mrs Maria Paola Pagnini, Head of Department of the International and Diplomatic Relations, Faculty of Political Sciences, at the University of Triesta, Italy.

"All the achievements and strides performed in Tunisia do bear witness to the important action conducted by President Ben Ali in order to help improve the standard of living of the Tunisian citizens".

Mr Silvio Berlosconi, Italian Prime Minister

"We highly value the action conducted by president Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, for he is ranked among the world leaders who are striving to resolve problems by all possible peaceful means".

Mr Otto Schily, German Interior Minister

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