Obama congratulates Tunisia's elected president
President Barack Obama congratulated President Beji Caid Essebsi on Monday for his victory in Tunisia's first presidential election under its new constitution Anadolu Agency reported
In a telephone call, Obama commended Tunisians "for the spirit of peaceful compromise that has prevailed throughout their historic democratic transition of the last four years," according to a White House statement.
"He underscored the United States' intent to continue strengthening and expanding our strategic partnership with Tunisia and emphasized our readiness to assist the incoming government as it works to meet all Tunisians' aspirations for security and economic opportunity."
Essebsi took the oath of office last week as Tunisia's first democratically-elected president following a 2011 revolution that ousted autocrat Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali.
The statement noted that the two leaders affirmed their desire for continued close cooperation and Obama invited Essebsi to visit Washington to continue their discussion at a mutually agreeable date.
Essebsi, who served as a parliament speaker under Ben Ali, defeated incumbent interim President Moncef Marzouki in a Dec. 21 presidential runoff, with 55.68 percent of the votes.
He is due to begin his term Jan. 14.