United States Vice-President Nelson Rockefeller and the French Minister of the Interior Michel Poniatowski were among representatives of about 80 countries who gathered in Tunis on Saturday (20 March) for celebrations marking Tunisia's 20 years of independence.
GV President Bourguiba in motorcade as crowd watches
GV Crowd along route
SV President Bourguiba past crowd (2 shots)
GV PAN TO Bourguiba's residence
SV INT Bourguiba receiving Vice-President of USA Rockefeller (2 shots)
SV Bourguiba greeting other officials (2 shots)
Initials BB/2350 MF/PN/BB/2330
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Background: United States Vice-President Nelson Rockefeller and the French Minister of the Interior Michel Poniatowski were among representatives of about 80 countries who gathered in Tunis on Saturday (20 March) for celebrations marking Tunisia's 20 years of independence.
Tunisian President Habib Bourguiba was given an enthusiastic welcome by the population when he drove through the streets of Tunis on Friday (19 March) at the start of the celebrations. His motorcade drove at walking speed, surrounded by a vast mass of people on all sides who were in a joyous mood. They shouted slogans like "long live our leader", "long live independent Tunisia" and "hooray for Bourguiba".
Tunisia became independent on 20 March 1967, after 75 years as a French protectorate and modern Tunisia is very much the creation of one man -- President Bourguiba. A nationalist leader since the 1930's, he became Prime Minister after winning the elections held immediately after independence and was elected President a year later.
SYNOPSIS: On Saturday Tunisia celebrated 20 years of independence and representatives of 80 countries gathered in Tunis for the occasion. The creator of modern Tunisia -- President Habib Bourguiba -- was warmly greeted by the population when he drove through the streets of Tunis. On Friday enthusiastic crowds shouted slogans like "hooray for Bourguiba" and virtually mobbed his motorcade.
At his official residence President Bourguiba greeted United States Vice-President Nelson Rockefeller, one of the many distinguished public figures attending the celebrations. Mr. Rockefeller said that the United States attached great importance to its close relations with Tunisia and would make every attempt to reinforce them. He also praised Tunisians for "the energetic and practical way they have risen to the challenge of development".
Other countries represented at the celebrations included France, West Germany, Norway, the Vatican, India and Niger. The foreign delegations were entertained with a cultural evening at Tunis's Municipal Theatre on Friday.