August 25, 2015

Meeting Launches Mauritania Program


August 2015

On May 27, 2014, the ABA Rule of Law Initiative (ABA ROLI) hosted a meeting in Nouakchott, Mauritania, to officially launch its program to strengthen the capacity of civil society organizations (CSOs) to better serve marginalized groups. The event was attended by about 45 representatives of local and international stakeholders.


Speakers included the president of the National Human Rights Commission, the head of the Mauritanian Bar Association, the head of the European Union’s rule of law program in Mauritania and a representative from the network of Mauritanian non-governmental organizations.


Participants included representatives from the ministries of interior, justice and social affairs, the Mauritanian Bar Association, the Court of Appeals, the Prosecutor’s Office, the Commissariat for Human Rights, the U.S. Embassy, the European Commission, the National Agency to Fight Slavery (Tadamoun), the National Human Rights Commission, Humanitarian Action and the University of Nouakchott Law School. Speakers included the president of the National Human Rights Commission, the head of the Mauritanian Bar Association, the head of the European Union’s rule of law program in Mauritania and a representative from the network of Mauritanian non-governmental organizations.

Billal Ould Dick, of Tadamoun, said, “It is the first time that I see members from civil society groups and the government united to discuss rule of law issues affecting Mauritania in a constructive spirit of exchange and respect.” Other attendees agreed that the participatory approach offered an unprecedented platform for dialogue and collaboration between government and civil society.

ABA ROLI’s program in Mauritania, which is supported by the U.S. Agency for International Development and the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor, focuses on increasing the political and civic participation of marginalized groups, especially women, the stateless, and current and former victims of slavery.

In June 2015, the National Human Rights Commission and the Mauritanian Bar Association convened civil society representatives for the first meeting of the legal working group.

To learn more about our work in Mauritania, contact the ABA Rule of Law Initiative at rol@americanbar.org.