Mauritania History - C20
France establishes Mauritania as a colonial territory.
Mauritania becomes part of French West Africa, and is administered from Senegal.
Mauritania becomes a French overseas territory.
Nouakchott established as a capital for Mauritania
Nouakchott was founded at the site of a small colonial village, the Ksar, while 90% of the population was still nomadic.
Mauritania becomes a self-governing country
Mauritania becomes an independent country under the name: ( Islamic Republic of Mauritania)
First post-independence president of Mauritania = Moktar Ould Daddah .
He was helped to the post by the French.
With independence, larger numbers of ethnic Sub-Saharan Africans (Haalpulaar, Soninke, and Wolof) entered Mauritania, moving into the area north of the Senegal River. As before independence, the sedentary lifestyle of these groups made them more receptive to and useful in state formation, and they quickly came to dominate state administration, even if the Moorish groups built up by the French remained in charge of the political process. Moors reacted to this change by increasing pressures for Arabization, to Arabicize many aspects of Mauritanian life, such as law and language, and ethnic tension built up - helped by a common memory of warfare and slave raids.
(History of Mauritania - Wikipedia.htm)
Mauritania makes territorial claims to neighbouring Spanish Sahara.
The USSR vetoed Mauritania's application for UN membership.
(EWH, 4th ed., p.1233)
Outer Mongolia and Mauritania become the 102nd and 103rd members of UN.
To take advantage of the country's sizable iron ore deposits in Zouérat, the new government built a 675-km railway and a mining port. Production began in 1963. The mines were operated by a foreign owned consortium that paid its approximately 3,000 expatriate workers handsomely - their salaries accounted for two-thirds of the country's entire wages bill. When the Mauritanian miners went on a two-month strike in the late 1960s the army intervened and eight miners were killed. Left-wing opposition to the government mounted and some miners formed a clandestine Marxist union in 1973.
President Ould Daddah survived the challenge from left-wing opponents by nationalising the company in 1974 and withdrawing from the franc zone, substituting the ouguiya for the CFA.
President Moktar Ould Daddah, originally, rapidly turned Mauritania into an authoritarian one-party state , with his new constitution.
Daddah's own Parti du Peuple Mauritanien (PPM) became the ruling organization.
The President justified this decision on the grounds that he considered Mauritania unready for western-style multi-party democracy.
Under this one-party constitution, Daddah was reelected in uncontested elections in 1966, 1971 and 1976.
A severe famine hit the Sahel region of North Africa. Mauritania, Mali, Upper Volta (Burkina Faso) and Niger were most affected.
(Econ, 8/20/05, p.57)
Mauritania joins the Arab League.
Spain moved out of Spanish Sahara and the native Sahrawi called for independence.
Both Morocco and Mauritania laid claim to Spanish Sahara (now known as Western Sahara) following Spain’s withdrawal.
Mauritania and Morocco divide up Spanish Sahara, Western Sahara, after Spain pulls out.
Polisario Front, an armed nationalist movement, tried to establish an independent state in the territory for its largely nomadic people.
Guerrillas of the Polisario front, , fought the forces of both countries.
In 1975, partly for nationalist reasons and partly for fear of Moroccan expansionism, Mauritania invaded and annexed the southern third of the former Spanish Sahara (now Western Sahara) in 1975, renaming it Tiris al-Gharbiyya. However, after nearly three years of raids by the Sahrawi guerrillas of the Polisario Front, Mauritania's economic and political stability began to crumble. Despite French and Moroccan military aid, Polisario raids against the Zouerate railway and mines threatened to bring about economic collapse, and there were deep misgivings in the military about the Saharan adventure. Ethnic unrest contributed to the disarray. Black Africans from the south were conscripted as front-line soldiers, after the northern Sahrawi minorities and their Moorish kin had proven unreliable in the fight against Polisario, but many of the southerners rebelled against having to fight what they considered an inter-Arab war. After the government quarters in Nouakchott had twice been shelled by Polisario forces, unrest simmered, but Daddah's only response was to further tighten his hold on power.
( Mauritania Country Study , Library of Congress Federal Research Division on the link :http://lcweb2.loc.gov/frd/cs/mrtoc.html
First post-independence president, Moktar Daddah, is deposed in a a bloodless military coup d'état.
The coup is prompted partly by the struggle against Polisario guerrillas and resulting financial strains.
Col. Mustafa Ould Salek led this coup that ousted the President Moktar Daddah who later went to exile in France.
Power passed to the military strongmen of the Military Committee for National Recovery (CMRN). Polisario immediately declared a cease-fire, and peace negotiations began under the sponsorship of Polisario's main backer, Algeria. With the CMSN's leader reluctant to break with France and Mauritania, the country refused to give in to Polisario demands for a troop retreat, and Ould Salek's careless handling of the ethnic issue (massively discriminating against Black Africans in nominating for government posts contributed to further unrest.
In early 1979
Ould Salek was pushed aside by another group of officers, who renamed the junta the Military Committee for National Salvation (CMSN). Col. Mohamed Khouna Ould Haidalla soon emerged as its main strongman.
Mauritania signs a peace agreement with the Polisario front and renounces its claim to Western Sahara. Morocco annexes Mauritania's former share of the territory.
Polisario broke off the cease-fire and unleashed a string of new attacks on military and government targets. Mauritania, under its new government, immediately returned to the table to meet Polisario's goals, declaring full peace, a troop retreat, relinquishing their portion of Western Sahara and recognizing the Front as the Sahrawi people's sole representative
(Coup in Mauritania as president, PM arrested - See the link:http://afp.google.com/article/ALeqM5jOO7pbj1cpN3prZXm_VhJU6BcZlw
In interior policy, Haidallah sought to improve relations between White Moors and Black Moors, among other things officially decreeing the ban of slavery for the first time in the country's history, but he neither tried nor achieved a radical break with the sectarian and discriminating policies of previous regimes. An attempt to reinstate civilian rule was abandoned after the above-mentioned Moroccan-sponsored coup attempt nearly brought down the regime; foreign-backed plots also involved Persian Gulf countries and Libya, and the country several times appeared to be under military threat from Morocco.
(Mauritania president under house arrest as army stages coup - See the following link: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/africaandindianocean/mauritania/2509991/Mauritania-president-under-house-arrest-as-army-stages-coup.html
In Mauritania : the regime of Colonel Ould Haidalla decreed the abolition of slavery and the imposition of the Islamic Sharia Law. Prior to the 1980 abolition, slavery had been declared illegal in 1960 and 1966, but only on paper.
(WSJ, 7/11/96, p.A10)(www.cwo.com/~lucumi/mauritania.html)
Attempted coup; Moroccan involvement is alleged .
Morocco, occupying the northern half of Western Sahara and also involved in combat against Polisario, launched a failed 1981 coup against the CMSN.
Mauritania broke off ties with Morocco in protest.
The ties were later restored.
( See: Troops stage coup in Mauritania http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/africa/7544834.stm)
Mauritania became last country in the world to abolish slavery.
The 1980 decree by Pres. Haidalla outlawing slavery was translated into law, however the legislation failed to criminalize it.
(Econ, 5/5/07, p.62)(http://web.amnesty.org/library/index/engAFR380032002!Open)
Mauritania's president,Ould Haidallah , was ousted in a coup
Coup brings Colonel Maaouiya Ould Sid Ahmed Taya to power.
Maaouya Ould Sid'Ahmed Taya declared himself Chairman of the CMSN. Like other rulers before him, he promised a swift transfer to democracy, but then made little of these promises.
محمد خونا ولد هيدالة = Mohammed Ould Haidalla
معاوية ولد سيدي أحمد طايع = Maaouiya Ould Sid Ahmed Taya = Maaoya Sid'Ahmed Taya
after that :
Colonel Taya won subsequent elections but was himself ousted by the military .
In Mauritania Maaoya Sid'Ahmed Taya took power in a military coup and tried to legitimize his rule in the 1990s through elections the opposition says were fraudulent.
finally , Colonel Taya was ousted in a military coup in 2005.
The EU inked its first fishing deal with Mauritania.
(WSJ, 1/18/07, p.A13)
The Arab Maghreb Union was created to encourage free trade between Algeria, Libya, Mauritania, Morocco and Tunisia. It failed to hold summit meetings after 1994.
(Econ, 5/29/10, p.50)
in April 1989 ,when a Mauritania–Senegal border dispute escalated into violence between the two communities race- riots eruptted in Mauritania and Senegal .
Clashes in Mauritania between Africans and Arabs .
Tens of thousands of black Mauritanians fled or were expelled from the country into Senegal. Others become the targets of attacks and land seizures. Hundreds of people are killed.
Tens of thousands of black Mauritanians remained in Senegal as refugees. This is also where the black Mauritanian movement FLAM is based. Although tension has since subsided, the Arab-African racial tension remains an important feature of the political dialog today. The country continues to experience ethnic tensions between its black minority population and the dominant Mauri (Arab–Berber) populace. A significant number from both groups, however, seek a more diverse, pluralistic society.
deported of the country = driven out=expelled from the country
During a border war with Senegal, tens of thousands of black Mauritanians, from high ranking civil servants to herdsmen, were accused of being Senegalese, rounded up and deported.
(Econ, 5/5/07, p.62)(AP, 7/29/11)
Opposition parties were legalized and a new constitution approved which put an end to formal military rule.
Ould Taya was elected a president for Mauritania
The winning of Ould Taya into elections was dismissed as fraudulent by both opposition groups and external observers.
US ends development aid over Mauritania's treatment of its black population and its support for Iraq in the 1991 Gulf War.
A US congressional committee urged Mauritania to free its slaves.
From Chad a plague of locusts began to spread across Mauritania with as many as 200 locusts per square yard.
(SFC, 9/27/97, p.A21)
Elections were held in Mauritania but boycotted by the main opposition parties.
As as a result ,President " Maaouya Sid’Ahmed Ould Taya" was re-elected .
Opposition parties considered this poll as fraudulent
Light-skinned Moors dominated the government under Pres. Maaouya Sid’Ahmed Ould Taya.
Mauritania President ( Maaouya Ould Sid’Ahmed Taya) met with Palestinian leader ( Yasser Arafat ) in Nouakchott.
Mauritania established full diplomatic relations with Israel despite strong internal opposition.
Mauritania became the third Arab country to recognize Israel.