Nouakchott Chides Paris for Welcoming Regime’s Staunch Opponent Biram

Mauritanian authorities have severely protested against Francois Hollande’s office after Paris received anti-slavery activist and former presidential candidate Biram Dah Abeid who has vowed to bring down President Mouhamed Ould Abdel Aziz’s regime.

Foreign Minister Ould Ahmed Izilbih Friday, at a meeting with Thomas Melonio, Francois Hollande’s adviser on African affairs, expressed Nouakchott’s discontent over the French official’s meeting with Biram Dah Abeid, a staunch opponent of President Abdel Aziz and also a leading anti-slavery activist.

Biram according to French ambassador in Nouakchott was received in Paris in his quality as former presidential candidate (2014) and as civil society figure to discuss issues in the North African country.

The Mauritanian regime fear Paris’s support for the activist who has vowed to put an end to President Abdel Aziz’s power, which the activist claims, has turned the country into a “cash cow” for the President’s entourage and friends.

Last month President Abdel Aziz vehemently protested against Burkina Faso President Jean-Marc Kabore for allowing Biram to criticize his regime on a state TV channel.

Biram and his Initiative for the Resurgence of the Abolitionist Movement (IRA) has been fighting slavery in Mauritania. According to the movement, slavery is still practiced in the country and the black population is sidelined.

Biram has won many international acclaims including UN award for Human Rights activist, in 2013.

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