INTRODUCTION: Representatives of 15 socialist parties ruling African states began a conference in the Tunisian capital, Tunis, on Thursday (26 February).
GV Hilton Hotel with flags.
GV Banner reading "Tunisia sports all peoples fighting for freedom and dignity".
SV PAN President Bourguiba arriving with officials.
SV INTERIOR President Bourguiba stepping up to rostrum.
SV INTERIOR Other delegates from Peoples Progress Party, PAN TO Peoples' National Party, Ghana.
SV Delegates from Party National, Morocco.
SV ZOOM OUT TO GV President Bourguiba and other delegates. (2 SHOTS)
SV Delegates from Socialist Destourian Party.
GV Conference hall.
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Background: INTRODUCTION: Representatives of 15 socialist parties ruling African states began a conference in the Tunisian capital, Tunis, on Thursday (26 February). One of the main topics of discussion was the establishment of Africa's Socialist International Organisation.
SYNOPSIS: Countries invited to the meeting included Kenya, Nigeria, Sudan, Zambia, Somalia and Ghana. The meeting had been largely prepared by the recently retired President of Senegal, Leopold Sedar Senghor, and Tunisia's President Bourguiba.
Addressing the start of the meeting, President Bourguiba immediately attacked Africa's radical governments. Many officially socialist regimes, he said, had not so far found satisfactory solutions to their problems. He also criticised the Soviet Union over Afghanistan, and promised full support for the Afghan rebels.
Later, former President Senghor said some African governments hid their Marxist and anti-democratic ideals behind the label "progressive", but he did not name them. For President Bourguiba, the meeting indicated clearly the differences between his government and some of Africa's more radical leaders. However, there were some resolutions on the table with a militant bite. Condemnations on imperialism and Zionism and support of non-alignment were among them.
Twenty-one countries were invited to the conference, although six did not attend. No reason was given for their absences.