Mauritanian presidential win disputed by opposition leaders




Mark Huband in Abidjan and agencies in Nouakchott

The Guardian, 27 January 1992

Opposition leaders in Mauritania last night rejected results in the first multi-party presidential election, which gave the military regime a landslide victory.

Interior ministry figures confirmed that Colonel Maaouiya Ould Sid Ahmed Taya, who seized power in 1984, secured 62.3 per cent of the vote with a 48 per cent turnout among voters. His nearest rival, Ahmed Ould Daddah, won 33.1 per cent.

Mr Daddah half brother of the country’s first president, Moktar Ould Daddah, rejected the result, claiming that the victory was achieved through fraud and widespread cheating.

Observers from Germany and the European Community said that in areas of the country where one party was particularly strong, opponents were reportedly barred from entry to the polling stations. Others were able to vote twice by rubbing off the ink from their hands which supposedly marked them out as having already cast their vote.

Meanwhile, the US state department is due to publish its latest report on human rights abuses in which Mauritania will be accused of failing to stop torture and the ill-treatment of prisoners.


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