MSC and Costa sailed their guests into danger in March when terrorists slaughtered cruise tourists as they exited into the Tunis museum excursion site from cruise buses transporting them from the port. The cruise lines neither provided nor arranged security for their customers or, for that matter, announced even a single warning of the risks of danger.
Terrorists have attacked tourist spots in Tunisia before and would so again.
The cruise lines ignored the considerable risks posed by the ISIS and Al Queda terrorists growing in neighboring Libya and already festering in Tunisia. After the bloodshed, the cruise industry quickly launched a PR campaign stating that cruising to Tunis was safe.
Soon, MSC and Costa began rescheduling calls to Tunis, notwithstanding the loss of life.
Princess, Croisieres De France (CDF), Holland America Line, Viking Ocean Cruises and Star Clippers also scheduled cruise ship to head to Tunis, as reported by the Cruise Arabia website.
But then terrorists targeted a resort in Tunisia frequented by tourists. On June 26th, 38 tourists were killed. Terrible, gruesome deaths. These were not cruise vacationers, but mostly British and European families on holiday, so the story was not portrayed as an attack on the cruise industry.
Today, the prime minister of Tunisia says that additional plots, aimed at "massive deaths," are in the works. He earlier declared a state of emergency.
60 tourists to Tunisia were killed in the two deadly attack in Tunisia in the past three months. I suppose it doesn’t really matter what the PR departments of the cruise lines say anymore. Their lack of credibility has been established. I believe Minister Habib Essid when he says that the terrorists are plotting the deaths of tourists, whether they arrive by cruise ship, airplane or bus.
I reached out today on Twitter and Facebook to determine which cruise lines canceled their stops in Tunis. A couple of passengers tell me that Costa, which canceled cruise after the March attacks but scheduled stops in August, just canceled some of their calls later this summer. But no word from any travel agents, or cruise lines for that matter, whether they are still selling cruises to North Africa.
July 9 2015 Update: MSC announced today that the "MSC Preziosa no longer will visit La Goulette, Tunisia between November 15, 2015 and April 23, 2016 as scheduled. The ship instead will stop in Valletta, Malta. Also affected are single sailings of the MSC Magnifica and MSC Poesia in November and December, respectively. Both of the ships instead will stop in Alicante, Spain."
July 10 2015 Update: According to Time magazine, the terrorist trained with extremists in Libya at the same time as the two gunmen who killed the 22 cruise passengers in the March attack during the Bardo museum excursion for Costa and MSC in Tunis.
"Thirty of the 38 people killed in Sousse were British tourists. Britain’s Foreign Office warned tourists Thursday to leave Tunisia as soon as possible, saying a further terrorist attack was ‘highly likely.’”
Photo Credit: La Goulette Village Harbor