Mauritania: UN chief says 'disagreements' over referendum results must be addressed peacefully

8 August 2017

Following Mauritania's 5 August constitutional referendum, United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres has encouraged all stakeholders to ensure that disagreements are addressed peacefully within the confines of the law and respect for the rights to freedom of assembly and expression.

Mauritanians went to the polls this past Saturday, with the electoral commission announcing on Sunday that the results were in favour of a constitutional amendment that abolishes the Senate and alters the national flag.

According to media reports, opposition parties leading a boycott movement declared that they would not recognize the results of the vote.

“The Secretary-General calls on all Mauritanians to work together to deepen the rule of law and promote social cohesion and national unity,” Stéphane Dujarric, Spokesman for the Secretary-General, said in a statement.

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Mauritania: UN rights office voices concern about unrest ahead of constitutional referendum

The United Nations human rights office today expressed concern about the ongoing unrest in Mauritania, ahead of the constitutional referendum scheduled for Saturday, particularly the apparent suppression of dissenting voices and the reported use of excessive force by the authorities against protest leaders.