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Kushner's memoirs: Washington pressured Saied to dismiss pro-Palestine UN ambassador

Senior Advisor to President Donald Trump and son-in-law Jared Kushner at the White House in Washington, DC on 13 August 2020 [Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images]
Former senior Advisor to President Donald Trump and son-in-law Jared Kushner at the White House in Washington, DC. [Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images]

Jared Kushner, the son-in-law of former US President Donald Trump, revealed in his memoirs that the Trump administration pressured Tunisian authorities to dismiss former Tunisian Ambassador to the United Nations (UN) Moncef Baati. The reason behind the dismissal was that in 2020, he prepared a draft resolution condemning the "deal of the century" proposed by Trump.

Political analyst and researcher at Wesleyan University, Mohamed Dhia Hammami, commented on Kushner's memoirs, Breaking History: "In his new book, Jared Kushner says that Baati's dismissal came after an American complaint – via Avi Berkowitz (the former US envoy for peace in the Middle East) – to the Tunisian ambassador to Washington at the time and the caretaker prime minister, Youssef Chahed. Kushner explains that the dismissal was critical to succeed what is known as the "deal of the century" and countering efforts to confront it because Baati was preparing a draft UN resolution denouncing the deal. Contrary to what Kushner mentioned, the president of the republic is the one who has the right to appoint and dismiss ambassadors, not the prime minister."

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"The American narration regarding the dismissal of the permanent representative of Tunisia to the UN in New York, Moncef Baati, after an American request by the pampered son-in-law of President Trump, in a flagrant challenge to the sovereignty of the Tunisian state has nothing to do with the flimsy justifications provided by the resigned spokeswoman of the Carthage Palace and director of the presidential office along with the spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, to cover up the decision that humiliated sovereignty and was issued by the president of the republic, with a conspiracy by our ambassador in Washington at the time and a suggestion of the caretaker prime minister," expressed Abdelwahab El-Hani, the former UN expert and head of the Al-Majd Party.

The decision to dismiss Baati in 2020 sparked widespread controversy in Tunisia, especially since it came after Baati prepared a draft resolution condemning the "deal of the century". The Tunisian presidency denied at the time that it was subjected to US pressure to dismiss him. Likewise, the Foreign Ministry faced widespread criticism after it accused Baati of "collaborating" with Israel and "conspiring" against the country's security.

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