Jul 27, 2012

Ashton to Keep Pressure on Nouakchott

The EU High Representative, Catherine Ashton, has responded to enquiries made jointly by Fiorello Provera MEP, Niccolò Rinaldi MEP, Luigi Berlinguer MEP and Ana Miranda MEP, stating that the EEAS continues to follow closely the case of Biram Ould Abeid and his fellow activists as the EU Delegation monitors the judicial process and its impartiality.

Below is the EU High Representative’s letter:

Dear Colleagues,

Thank you for the Letter of 26 June concerning the trial of Mr. Biram Dah Ould Abeid in Mauritania.

The European External Action Service (EEAS) is aware of the arrest and detention of Mr. Biram Dah Ould Abeid and of several sympathizers of the ¨Initiative de Résurgence du movement abolitionniste¨ (IRA) in Mauritania. Both EEAS Headquarters in Brussels and the EU Delegation in Mauritania are closely following the case.

The Head of the EU Delegation to Mauritania met, together with the Ambassador of the Member States, the Minister of Foreign Affairs and expressed concern at the events, the treatment of Mr. Biram Dah Ould Abeidand his colleagues. They also recalled the responsibility of Mauritania´s authorities to protect the physical and psychologically inviolability of Mr Biram Dah Ould Abeid and the other detainees, as well as to ensure a fair, transparent and impartial judicial procedure.

The Delegation is in regular contact with NGOs and Human Rights Defenders on the ground and receives regular updates on the situation. As you are aware, the trial of Mr Biram Dah Ould Abeid has been cancelled for formal flaws and the case has been returned to the prosecutor´s office. The EU Delegation will continue to follow the trial closely.

The Delegation and the Headquarters are maintain pressure on the Mauritanian authorities on every possible occasion and the issue is a significant point in the EU political and Human Rights Dialogue with Mauritania.¨



Catherine Ashton


For the PDF version of Catherine Ashton´s Letter click here

For the PDF version of the MEPs Joint Letter click here