Mauritanians celebrate Kadhafi downfall
By Mohamed Yahya Ould Abdel Wedoud and Jemal Oumar for Magharebia in Nouakchott – 24/08/11
Scores of angry demonstrators gathered around the Libyan embassy in Nouakchott Monday (August 22nd) and tore down the green Kadhafi flag, replacing it with the tricolour Libyan flag.
"We have been impatiently waiting for these happy moments to express our position that supports the Libyan revolution," said Abdullah Ould al-Sayed, a young man who took part in storming the embassy.
Protestors also painted the main embassy gate in the colours of the new flag. Security forces stationed around the embassy did not intervene.
"And here we are today living the ecstasy of that victory because we believe it would be a shame to continue to raise the green flag which symbolises… the continuation of Kadhafi's dictatorial era," Ould al-Sayed added.
Several Mauritanian political parties issued statements welcoming the imminent end of Moamer Kadhafi's regime, including the Democratic Convergence Party (CDN).
"On this happy occasion, we in CDN warmly congratulate the brotherly people of Libya and its revolutionary leadership represented by the Transitional National Council (TNC) on this impressive victory against the regime of tyranny and oppression," the party said.
The statement continued: "We believe that the success of the blessed Libyan revolution is the biggest lesson to all Arab tyrants, both big and small. It will also be the best prelude to establish democracy and human rights in our Maghreb countries, and will certainly push the Arab region to a reality where Arab people enjoy their full freedom, humanity and dignity that they have been deprived of."
The ruling Union for the Republic Party (URP) issued a statement in which it declared that "the brotherly Libyan people have undergone a decisive phase in their modern political history with the arrival of revolutionary forces in Tripoli."
The URP called on Libyans "to exercise self-restraint and to evoke the good morals they have been known for in terms of forgiveness and respect of human rights, especially in this holy month of Ramadan, in order to boost national unity, which is the engine to found a sound democratic model".
"I gladly received the news about the imminent fall of Kadhafi," former diplomat Al Ould Alaf commented. "I believe that if the TNC arrests him, they should try him in Libya. He's a symbol of all dictators and all oppressed peoples in Africa."
"Now the more difficult task will start for the TNC, which has to maintain national unity and preserve the democratic transitional period in Libya," Ould Alaf added.
Journalist and analyst Saeed Ould Habib said that Kadhafi "caused suffering to many Mauritanians" by using impoverished populations in order to gain political standing.
"He approached them through this door of financial needs, and satisfied the financial desires of some people in return for surrounding himself with an aura of leadership and sanctity," he said.
"This is a fake character that Kadhafi excels in exploiting," Ould Habib said.
"With the fall of Kadhafi, one hotbed of tensions in the world will disappear," political analyst Mohamed Ould al-Aqel said. "This is because Kadhafi was supporting secret movements and has been a factor of polarisation of the Sahara peoples, who he was using to play with too many cards. Therefore, international politics will breathe a sigh of relief with the disappearance of a criminal who has been controlling huge means for four decades."
Ould al-Aqel expects that "many crises of armed rebellions and political tensions in the countries on the African continent, which have suffered the woes of Kadhafi's support of international terrorism and rebellion, will see a breakthrough".
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