Home RIGHTS Mauritania: Slavery and Torture Complaints before the UN and the AU

Mauritania: Slavery and Torture Complaints before the UN and the AU

Demonstration against slavery and discrimination in Nouakchott, April 29, 2015.

In Brussels, lawyers have filed an international complaint to denounce slavery and torture in Mauritania. It was sent to the UN Rapporteur on Slavery and to the Legal Committee of the African Union. For the defenders of the victims, this is a situation that persists in Mauritania despite the abolition of slavery: whole families are slaves from mother to daughter and father to son.

It was in a symbolic place, the European Parliament, that lawyers wanted to present their complaint. MEP Louis Michel recalled that slavery persists in Mauritania. “Slavery was officially abolished in 1981,” he said, “it has been a crime since 2007 and the law has been strengthened since 2015. Unfortunately there are still many situations of total servitude, forced and unpaid labor. “

For William Bourdon, a French lawyer with the Mauritanian association “Ira”, who is fighting against slavery, there is no doubt: “There is no will of the Mauritanian authorities to end slavery in the country.”

An international complaint has therefore been filed at the United Nations and the African Union. Biram Dah Abeid is the president of the “Ira” association. He deplored the Mauritanian authorities’ persistence against anti-slavery militants. “A sentence of one year to five years of imprisonment has been passed to sanction anyone who criticizes the slavery code that Europe and America have abolished for centuries. It is the Mauritanian state, it is the Mauritanian Parliament,” he deplored.

With this complaint, all hope for international recognition of this situation in Mauritania and real sanctions against slavers.

Source: RFI Africa