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U.S. Department of State

Diplomacy in Action

Call for Return to Constitutional Order in Mauritania

Press Statement
Robert Wood
Acting Spokesman
Washington, DC
January 23, 2009
January 23, 2009


President Abdallahi’s first attempt to return to Nouakchott since his ostensible release from detention by the military junta in December was blocked by junta security forces on January 22. President Abdallahi was denied permission to enter Nouakchott to deliver a planned address outlining his proposal for resolving the political crisis in Mauritania.

This incident and previous junta-organized demonstrations against the return of President Abdallahi to the capital clearly show that he is still being denied basic rights of movement and association and that his personal security may be at risk. We call on the military junta to permit President Abdallahi's full participation in the political process, to assure his freedom of movement and association, and to assure his personal safety.

The junta’s announced plans to organize unconstitutional elections along with its attempts to silence President Abdallahi and his supporters violate democratic norms. We reiterate our call for the immediate return to constitutional order.




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