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Mauritania Minister of Defence runs for president

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The Minister of Defence in Mauritania, Mohamed Ould Cheikh Mohamed Ahmed Ould El Ghazouani, is the ruling majority’s candidate for the 2019 presidential election, government spokesman Sidi Mohamed Ould Maham announced Tuesday, 29 January 2019, on Twitter.

Ould El Ghazouani, long-time Chief of General Staff of the country’s armed forces, will be “our candidate, as a regime, in the upcoming presidential elections,” scheduled for mid-2019, Ould Maham’s tweet read.

According to Ould Maham, the current Minister of Defence is “the best option for the continuity of the pioneering national project of security, democracy and development.”

Mauritanian leader, Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz, who came to power in 2008 following a coup, was elected in 2009 and re-elected in 2014.

According to Mauritania’s constitution, Abdel Aziz cannot run for a third term.

He has said on several occasions that he will not amend the constitution to keep himself in power.

However, he has said he will not leave the country, and will not lose interest in the country’s affairs.

A close friend of the head of state, Ould El Ghazouani was also his classmate at the military academy in Meknes, Morocco. The two were also at the heart of the 2008 military coup.

Known for his discretion, Ould El Ghazouani has not yet made a statement regarding his bid for the presidency.



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