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Arts & Entertainment 2013-11-15

Mauritania police arrest rappers

By Bakari Guèye in Nouakchott for Magharebia – 15/11/2013

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Nouakchott police on Tuesday (November 13th) arrested performer Leila Moulaye, one day after they took Mauritanian rapper Hamzo Bryn into custody.

The two youths' detention came in response to their September 28th online release of a video titled "It started from Nouakchott" by Hamzo's Group "Soco Izi", which provoked a wave of protests from the more conservative fringes of society.

The video features a Mauritanian girl, Leila, who appears with her head uncovered. The video garnered more than 21,460 hits within three days of its release.

The NGO "No to pornography" strongly condemned the video, demanding that authorities take legal action against those behind it.

NGO activist Sidi Ould Hassan said, "These rappers are viruses for the youth. They set a bad example."

"Justice must condemn them to prevent other young people from imitating them. We are a Muslim country and we must be guided only by values of the Sunnah of Prophet Muhammad Peace be upon him," he added.

Reacting to the uproar caused by the video, Leila Moulaye countered the attacks: "Why not make a video in modern dress? Why do so many people see culture as a sacred box where every citizen is condemned to remain shut away? Anyone who tries to escape from it is demonised," she told Le Rénovateur.

"Look around you," she added. "In schools, universities and markets, you'll see that my passion has done nothing to infringe the culture... I'm sure you'll meet many women on a daily basis who have their heads uncovered...."

"I'm really grateful to those who have supported… The thought of a united Mauritania scares some people. I'm talking about those who have always prevented young people from realising their potential," she noted.

Meanwhile, rapper Hamzo said, "People can say what they like! That won't change the way the wind's blowing. But I'd like to say to all those who are shocked at my video: shame on them, because they've just revealed their racist side!"

The arrest was also strongly criticised on the Mauritanian hip hop scene.

Baba Ciré Kane from the band "Star du Walo et du Fouta" said, "Young people need freedom to realise their potential. Here, people are hypocritical; how can they condemn this video while watching much more daring videos at home?" he told Magharebia.

Bass player Abdallahi Fall told Magharebia: "It's not acceptable to want to prevent young people from doing what they want to do. We've already seen that people don't help them, and if they act on their own initiative, people always try to stand in their way."

"Mauritania is a multicultural country, and every person must respect that diversity. We must not allow extremists to force their law upon us," he said.

"These rappers have done nothing wrong but our society is bent on traditions. Despite television and other modern means of communication, Mauritanians still do not accept that young people become empowered," said Marième mint Snih, a student at the University of Nouakchott.

She noted that the video was proof that young Mauritanians "can do interesting things if they are encouraged. This is what the government should do instead of repressing them".

This view was shared by Hawa Ba, a student at the girls' high school of Nouakchott, "In some circles of our society, girls are not accustomed to wearing the scarf and that should be understood."

"I do not agree with the accusation of rappers… I know Leila is a good girl... Here we are all Muslims and people know what they're doing," she said.

What do you think of this article?

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  1. Anonymous thumb

    blackdiamond 2014-7-30

    the fact is some do not want to see Mauritania is multiculture that is the question .there is nothing to blame on these videos .i like that courge leila

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    fatis pite 2014-4-14

    This is haram!

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    jeid med jeid 2014-3-1

    Sins are prevalent in Mauritania the territory of Menara and Rebat, the country of a million poets and scholar. From its territory Mourabitoune have emerged. Unfortunately, our sons spread songs which show western girls quasi-naked and its sons disobeying their Lord shamelessly! When we kept quiet on our land, the prophet, peace and blessings of God be upon him, was insulted with the pens of our sons.

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    mohamed salek 2014-1-23

    Freedom is necessary in our private lives.

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  5. Anonymous thumb

    LEYALY MR 2014-1-22

    Why is all this happening in our country today?

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  6. Anonymous thumb

    شغالي ولد محمد الأمين ولد الحسين 2014-1-21

    Those who hold on to their values are the only ones who have the right to defend the cultural heritage and seek to preserve and respect their values in its moral system. As for those who see progress in dissolution and moral decadence, they are losers and are broken up on the rock of parrot repetition of the cultures of others thinking that deformed civilisation is new fashion of the age and that it is modernisation and progress in itself. But what they do in fact is humiliating themselves and trampling their dignity unconsciously...

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    محمد الموريتاني 2013-12-12

    What young people are you talking about? Young people who grew up in disobeying God, ignoring the will of the people and ignoring the will the Lord of the people calling this effeminacy freedom? These effeminates don't know at all the meaning of freedom. They don't understand that we could be finer and more prosperous people with our religion and values which are dearer than what we have. With knowledge only and with reason not emotion.

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    امغني لمتونة الفالح 2013-12-11

    The most important thing is that what you publish is nice.

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    Chiko 2013-12-10

    It's just the fashion.

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  10. Anonymous thumb

    عبد الرحمن 2013-12-9

    Such immoral acts, which are contrary to our Islamic values and principles, should be stopped.

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    عبدو 2013-12-9

    This is haram!

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    ElKassem Daddah 2013-12-7

    As far as I know, anyone who tramples Islamic values whether in the name of democracy public freedoms or anything else, he deserves prison until he recovers his senses. With such acts, we might lose values and morals are the most important thing we have.

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    mimi 2013-12-7

    This news confirms that my country is still fine. We young people of Mauritania aren't represented by this form of art which carries the message of debauchery and nakedness. The rap should carry a noble message and change for the better as we are used to with Mauritanian rap singers such as Ouled Leblad and others.

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    SIDI MED 2013-12-7

    O Lord anyone who encouraged this farce, destroy him, disgrace him, torture him and exile him! O Lord amen!!

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    Mohamed Salim 2013-12-6

    It is not fair to imprison these people!

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    Habibou Dem 2013-12-6

    I absolutely agree. We must encourage young people, not try to block their path in their hearts.

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    عبدالله 2013-12-3

    Yes a Muslim country, but why do you accept democracy? Why don't we have Qur'an and Sunnah of His prophet as constitution? Where are you from this? When you accept democracy, this means making way for freedoms, freedom of anyone to do whatever they want. I am against anyone who tramples my culture. But it is not imposed on anyone. You have total freedom to do what you want. The state shouldn't stop in your way. In fact, this is discrimination!

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    DAHA 2013-12-3

    In reply to what was said in the interview, this will contribute to the progress of the country, "yes", but not in this way my sister. We are in a Muslim country.

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    موريتاني 2013-12-2

    There are many prostitution houses, why don't they arrest them? The country that hosts the highest rate of prostitution.

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    حمود ولد سيد الفاللي 2013-12-1

    My brothers and sisters, freedom doesn't lie in disobeying God but rather in obeying Him. God the Almighty says "Tell the believing women to lower their eyes, guard their private parts." My sister in God, if God orders you to lower your eye let alone covering your inner parts. To those who accept these acts I will just say "Do they not think they will be raised (to life) again, On a grievous day." contemplate well this verse, you should know that you will stand before the Creator and will be asked. So what will you reply? I will let the answer to you. (Hold yourself accountable before you will be held accountable! There are only two teams one in paradise and one in hell.) Peace be upon the followers of the right path!

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    hayati 2013-11-30

    This is a vice and we have condemned it. God is the greatest!

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    الغيورعلى لإسلام 2013-11-30

    We are a Muslim country. Such type of corrupt cultures shouldn't be spread. I support authorities in their action.

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    nesim 2013-11-30

    This video isn't proper for the traditions of Mauritania or its dignity. It is the country of Islam and Muslims. If you are a Muslim, you have to abide by their features and implement their sharia. We don't want this type of immorality in this chaste honest country.

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    Amou 2013-11-30

    There are things which are far more serious. Why don't you look at crimes committed every day? We are a country which has many cultures. In other words, there are Lkour, Baidhane and Haratine. This implementation is fit only in a country which has one culture. As I said, we have many cultures. You have your religion and I have my own religion. Salam.

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    Sidi 2013-11-30

    From God we are and to God we shall return! God does what He wants. The righteous ancestors are lost. Now young people imitate the West and love them. They forgot Abou Bakr, Ali and Omar. They imitate the West and forgot the messenger of God, peace and blessings of God be upon him. The prophet, peace and blessings of God be upon him, said "You are with those you love. So look whom you love!" Anyone who defends criminals is a hypocrite, a hypocrite!

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    محمد الامين 2013-11-29

    They have distorted the image of our country and they must be punished.

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    نفيسة أمين 2013-11-29

    O Lord protect us with your protection! O Lord this is a vice and we have condemned it! O Lord guide our young people to the interest of the nation and homeland, amen, praise be to God Lord of the worlds!

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    keliketo molok 2013-11-29

    This video isn't proper for the traditions of Mauritania or its dignity. It is the country of Islam and Muslims. If you are a Muslim, you have to abide by their features and implement their sharia. We don't want this type of immorality in this chaste honest country. Peace, mercy and blessings of God be upon you. Thank you!

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    keliketo molok 2013-11-29

    Leila the cursed, we ask God to help her, guide us and her to the right path!

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  30. Anonymous thumb

    حداه سيد 2013-11-29

    This is a scare tactic and you are a conservative society.

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  31. Anonymous thumb

    zeyna 2013-11-29

    they do the right things so big up layla just keep it real girl we still with you

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    ĤặtlŏŐộr Ŝĥ 2013-11-28

    Honestly, I don't agree with what they did. They are free, they can do what they want. Moreover, of course we are a Muslim country. In addition, Tunisia, Egypt, Algeria, Morocco and other countries are Muslim countries but 95 of their women don't wear hijab. Everyone is free in himself. Moreover, adults in Mauritania are corrupt and young people are walking on their steps.

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    سيدي 2013-11-28

    God's curse on a woman who speaks loudly even when saying the word of God! This is a vice and we have condemned it.

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  34. Anonymous thumb

    BECHIR 2013-11-28

    I am a fan of HAMZOU BERAWEN.

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  35. Anonymous thumb

    ahmed salem boukhoussa 2013-11-28

    This is what our erudite scholars have warned us against when they explained the danger of modern communication especially the internet on our young people who are often swept by the will to imitate the West and ambition to get rid of the traditions of the true religion which recommend reservation, rejects extremism, debauchery, immorality and deviation. All those who commit such acts are victims of ideological invasion which is directed by channels advocating the liberation of women from hijab, granting her total freedom in doing things which are far from Islamic values and which aren't associated with the instructions of the true religion. The authors of this kind of eccentricity and deviation think it is a form of progress, development or freedom while in reality it is the opposite. But in reality, it is the opposite. The target of those who have sown its seeds in the Islamic World through globalization is to introduce the virus of extremism and deviation to the ranks of Muslims trying to blur the identity of Islam. If such vicious manners found in front of them a nation whose youth hold on tightly to their faith, show pride in it and its true sharia a method and starting point to reply to the enemies of Islam saying “Our religion is freedom. Our religion is equality and we don’t need to change it.” Then the enemies of religion will go back disappointed with their heads hanging low. But when the vicious instructions find a propitious ground which consider rejection of hijab a freedom such as the authors of this criminal video clip, the ailment will spread very quickly among Muslim young people who have a weak faith, its practice will be spread among them. This is the outcome of the weak belief and weak adherence to the sharia of Mohamed, peace and blessings of God be upon him, God forbids! Every individual will be held accountable by His Lord for everything, big or small, and will reward him accordingly.

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    emine 2013-11-28

    Given the deterioration of cultural levels, some tolerate such odious acts. As for me, they are the summit of depravity and deviation. It is true that every individual is free in his acts. But the freedom of the individual stops when the freedom of others begin. Showing openly such acts is a crime against our true religion. It is not question of discrimination as some think as much as it is a pride in the moral heritage which should be preserved.

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    دداح باب 2013-11-28

    Starting from the hadith of the prophet, peace and blessings of God be upon him, who says "If you see a vice, change it," I strongly condemn the acts of the criminals Leila and Hamzo. This is because this act is contrary to our morals, values and our true religion. Religion isn't against freedom which is advocated by these people. Freedom, happiness and tranquillity lie in it. However, all freedoms are restricted by the instructions of the tolerant sharia. We have seen the outcome of absolute freedom for other peoples. They have lost dignity, human spirit and have become like cattle or even more astray. Moreover, I say to the dear brothers that this mean girl doesn't belong to our society. She is a daughter of adultery and because of her excessive naughtiness, she couldn't live with her mother.

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    سهام السمسدية 2013-11-27

    The Mauritanian government should understand that this is a renaissance of Mauritanian young people and that they can't stand on their way. Therefore, it is better they release Leila and Hamzo before things get out of control. I support Leila and Hamzo.

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    aicha sega 2013-11-27

    No, we are Muslims. We don't accept this in our society and in our country because it is a Muslim country.

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    ahmedbaba 2013-11-26

    Women are the problems in themselves. The problem today is that people are always in a state of lack of cover. All the body of woman is considered provocative except her eyes and hands. If she is not punished according to applicable laws, it will be the beginning of the fashion of nakedness for women especially young girls. We know that we aren't flawless. If we see something fascinating, we will be roaming with excitement. Salam. Ahmed Bab Ouled Aouimir.

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    Mohamed Done 2013-11-26

    They should be imprisoned. If they want to show their talent, let them go to a country other than Mauritania.

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    sami ahmed 2013-11-26

    Of course and without doubt, the hip hop young man shouldn't be condemned because this is his freedom. This is the cause of our backwardness. If someone wants to show his talent, we stand in his face because of envy!

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    ahmed 2013-11-26

    These have gone too far. This is clear even if I am a young man.

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    ali 2013-11-25

    But before they watch the video clip on the internet and say we are a Muslim country, why don't they look at prostitution houses which are in front of them or are they considered mosques for them?

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    cheikh tourad 2013-11-25

    Advice to everyone. Freedom and freedom of expression should be in the satisfaction of God. On the other hand, it is a western invasion of our ideas and religions. Thank you!

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    mariem sidi 2013-11-25

    First of all, the age of youth is very serious. Often, the individual regrets what he did during that period. It is not fair to violate traditions and values of the people for nothing just because you want this. We must as young people adhere to good values and seek what will help us go ahead not call for vice and immorality. No and a thousand no to nakedness in videos and no to pornography. This exceeds the framework of freedom and is part of the banned. Thank you! May God guide us and you for His satisfaction and success when we will meet Him and look at His noble face. The Ummah of Mohamed can't agree on a wrong act. This is a vice and we have condemned it.

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    medbouye beillahi 2013-11-25

    What Leyle and Hamze did isn't good and isn't nice. As for me, I call for their release.

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    أبو محمد 2013-11-24

    Yes we are all Muslims. We must resort to sharia. Sharia criminalizes this act. If we resort to anything other than sharia, we're not Muslims.

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    مجهول 2013-11-24

    We are Muslims and don't accept such acts in our Muslim society.

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    مجهول 2013-11-24

    This video isn't worthy of traditions of Mauritania or its dignity. It is the country of Islam and Muslims. If you are a Muslim, you have to abide by their qualities and implement their sharia. We don't want this type of immorality in this chaste honourable country. Peace, mercy and blessings of God be upon you. Thank you!

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    عيش 2013-11-23

    We are Muslim. We must hold on to the instructions of our true religion. If young people want to do something important to upgrade himself and his country, there are many things which can be done. This is not considered development or progress. Countries don't progress or prosper as you say with such type. If you renounce to your culture and traditions, can't give anything to others or himself.

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    منت الحسين 2013-11-23

    Do you call the Melhafa (traditional dress) a covering dress? Even for an old woman it shows her legs and arms.

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    mn 2013-11-23

    Mauritanians are now seeking culture and artistic progress. This video they posted is progress for the country? It is lowering the morale of the country. They have made it for repulsion or fame. They are looking for financial support.

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    medleminehmouda 2013-11-22

    I tell them, if you seek to make this country progress, why don't you make progress in the field of science instead of the field of ignorance (singing)? This is not art. This is failure, its field are losers and in the world we didn't find a country which made progress thanks to singing.

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    صدام 2013-11-22

    First of all, I condemn this video. Secondly, I say those who think that by losing their morals they will reach success will be disappointed.

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    Chiffay Abdelwahab 2013-11-22

    We call upon Mauritanian authorities to pardon Leila and Hamzo Bryn.

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    danso 2013-11-22

    The odd thing in the issue is that there are many videos but they don't attract any interest at all? Why this one? Is it because they are Baydane? Racism!

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    mourad wel ebladi 2013-11-21

    I am against arresting young rap people. The Mauritanian society is Muslim. But there are different traditions and races. There are many things which should be solved without intolerance with young people.

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    Tourade Tourademedli Tourade 2013-11-21

    Concerning this topic, in my opinion, it has repercussions on the Mauritanian society in general especially the category of young people who support so much this video. Therefore, what the police did is the best action.

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    eheeh 2013-11-21

    There are two categories of people of hell. Women wearing clothes and almost naked. This means that they cover part of their bodies and show part of them. Walking side-ways and captivating, which means they are deviating from the right path and deviate their friends from the right, which means they walk like fashion models; their heads are like camel hunches. They won’t enter paradise and can’t feel its smell although it is smelt from a long distance. Fear God! My sister, you are disobeying God with His graces. What if your nice body were burnt? O God, o God, the sanctities of God are violated! O Lord, I have transmitted the message, o Lord be my witness! Ask God's forgiveness for you and for me.

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    ِAziza 2013-11-20

    An excellent article!

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      Mohamed Done 2013-11-26

      Are you Muslim?

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    papis 2013-11-20

    It is not fair to imprison these people.

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    aziza 2013-11-20

    I am quite against Leila and Hamza. I support their punishment.

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      أبو محمد 2013-11-24

      Is this justice, is it justice to spread corruption in society? Which is more acceptable for you corrupting a society or punishing the violators of sharia?

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    taya 2013-11-20

    I hope she will never be released.

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    مخمد 2013-11-19

    We call upon Mauritanian authorities to make of them a lesson for others and impose on them the severest sanctions.

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      Mohamed Done 2013-11-26

      Yes, this is what we want.

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    wl chamr 2013-11-19

    As a Muslim educated society that understands that the spread of the imitation of the West by young people alleging they are practising their hobbies, shouldn't allow them to do such acts in our country so that such behaviour won't be spread. Such video is like a scourge among young people.

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    drich 2013-11-19

    True, I support these statements 100% The NGO "No to pornography" strongly condemned the video, demanding that authorities take legal action against those behind it. NGO activist Sidi Ould Hassan said, "These rappers are viruses for the youth. They set a bad example." "Justice must condemn them to prevent other young people from imitating them. We are a Muslim country and we must be guided only by values of the Sunnah of Prophet Muhammad Peace be upon him," he added.

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    lymohamedou 2013-11-18

    To Mohamed in Arab Emirates. I am against arresting rap young people. Mauritanian society is Muslim. However, there are different traditions and races. But there are many thing which need to be solved without fanaticism against young people.

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      أبو محمد 2013-11-24

      "There is painful punishment in this world and the next for those who like that immorality should spread among the believers." You should fear that you might be one of those about whom this verse is said and don't support those who openly do immorality. The issue isn't the issue of Aznaka, Ikaouen movements, Chérif or Oualkhima Maalouma. It is a question of Islamic sharia which was violated and open immorality. This will make young people violate sharia in future.

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    باب 2013-11-17

    My brothers, don't have to embellish it and don't say without the head cover. She is totally naked. Her sides and shoulders are naked. From her knees, there is nothing. We don't oppose anyone to sing in any field. Some songs raise awareness or tackle some phenomena which are prejudicial to the country. They can change this while respecting values and instructions of our true religion.

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    sousou 2013-11-17

    I oppose even imprisoning them. This is because we see more hideous things, everyday in houses and homes. Yes, we must respect the religion of Islam. It is possible that these youths didn't act properly and were wrong. But they shouldn't be punished in this way. A reader.

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    vadel 2013-11-17

    There is no doubt that the appearance of Leila in this video is a haram act which is contradictory to the instructions of our true religion. However, the reaction to that video is very exaggerated, fanatic and racist. 1- Would the video have stirred the same reaction if Leila was one of our black brothers who are of the people of the Islamic Mauritanian Republic? 2- Aren't pictures and videos posted on pages of Djoff and ehel_jew more hideous, dangerous and obscene but they weren't even condemned with a pen? 3- Hasn't a national TV broadcast a song by a Mauritanian artist from Al Baidane which dates back to the eighties and who was dancing in clothes not different from the clothes of Leila? 4- Haven't other singers made more indecent singers but no one talked about them such as Babis Kemi and others? So why do we treat Leila with double standards while we neglect Ramata, Oli, Fat, Rocky and others? Don't they go to public places including markets, offices and schools almost naked and they don't attract the intention of anyone. Is it just because their customs and traditions protect them while our customs and traditions don't allow such acts? But they allow man to talk obscenely in his poetry (two verses in local Mauritanian dialect) Aren't these verses considered more obscene than the act of Leila? Brothers who have attacked this video in the name of religion should understand that they aren't defending religion. They are rather defending customs and traditions. If religion was the real motive, they would have attacked all categories of society because religion doesn't know discrimination on the basis of colour and race. I fear that they have fallen in the trap when they gave the video more than its volume to exceed the line of 55000 viewers. This might be in the interest of the producer.

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      Ahmed 2013-11-27

      God bless you! Well said my dear brother!

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    nounou 2013-11-17

    Very nice article! I thank the police for taking the decision to arrest these two criminals. Thank you!

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    sidahmed jemal christophe 2013-11-16

    This immoral video is considered a virus for young people, it offends our true religion. I am against releasing them. Releasing them will be considered a help to them in this immoral invasion of Islam and its precepts. I note here that this video is considered a good idea for some young girls who think it is progress and modernity. I remind them that there are many young people who hold on to the traditions and moral values. We oppose such immoral acts. Thank you!

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    med 2013-11-16

    Which progress are ou talking about? The judiciary should impose the most severe punishments against her.

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    محمدمحمود ولد الطالب النافع 2013-11-16

    O Lord protect our country from manifestations of lewd behavior and these sights. They should be fought by all means.

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    sidahmed brami 2013-11-16

    We are a conservative society. We shouldn't accept for any reason this type of deviation. If we open this way to teenagers, we will undoubtedly be ruined. The state should take necessary measures to avoid the repetition of this incident. If it happens, it will be a cause of sedition and ultimately the destruction of our great country. We ask God the greatest to protect it and keep our people safe and sound. O Lord protect us from hidden and apparent seditions!

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    Medlemin 2013-11-16

    I hope she will never be released!

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    ام الفضل 2013-11-16

    Disregarding the Arab-Islamic culture isn't building and hard work which should be done by young people and the state should help them in this. No, this means imitation of the West in its worst things, morals and material civilization which couldn't rise up to the level of spiritualities. This is because it doesn't respect morals. But it makes of them a platform for corrupting and corruption. What will these people say to their Lord? How will be their thoughts when they will day while they were spreading the culture of nakedness, obscenity and pornography?

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  79. Anonymous thumb

    ام هاشم 2013-11-16

    Enter your comment* O Lord this is enormous and we have condemned it. Mauritania. This is something we can't accept in our conservative society. Necessary measures should be taken against them and justice take its course. This is a way of accepting vice.

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  80. Anonymous thumb

    Helmy Helmy 2013-11-16

    She has to dance shamelessly because the immoral has nothing to be ashamed of.

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    • Anonymous thumb

      محمد 2014-1-26

      Well-done!

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  81. Anonymous thumb

    mbarekfall 2013-11-16

    I think there was nothing bad about what Leila did because in modern life, everyone is doing their own damage by not showing this and going against it. She dared to make a video without covering her head. That's the reason. Know that women don't like wearing scarves on their heads anymore.

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  82. Anonymous thumb

    L'eMzo L'officier 2013-11-16

    Release Hamzo Bryn and Leila Moulay. We want Mauritania to progress not go backward. Say with me I am not going to choose anything but Mauritania there it is in the bottom. I am Muslim, thank God. Let them, leave them, you're not the ones who are going to hold them accountable.

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  83. Anonymous thumb

    jidou wavy 2013-11-15

    There is clear contradiction between the announcement of democracy and the opposite.

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