Mauritania

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Islamic Republic of Mauritania
  • الجمهورية الإسلامية الموريتانية (Arabic)
    al-Jumhūrīyah al-Islāmīyah al-Mūrītānīyah
  • République islamique de Mauritanie (French)
Motto: شرف، إخاء، عدل
"Honour, Fraternity, Justice"
Anthem: النشيد الوطني الموريتاني
"Land of the Proud, Guided by Noblemen"
Location of Mauritania (dark green) in western Africa
Location of Mauritania (dark green) in western Africa
Capital
and largest city
Nouakchott
18°09′N 15°58′W / 18.150°N 15.967°W / 18.150; -15.967
Official languagesArabic
Recognised national languagesFrench
Recognised regional languagesPulaar, Soninke, Wolof, Zenaga
Other languagesEnglish, Italian, Spanish
Ethnic groups
Religion
Islam
Demonym(s)Mauritanian
GovernmentUnitary semi-presidential Islamic republic
• President
Mohamed Ould Ghazouani
Mohammed Ould Bilal
Cheikh Ahmed Baye[1]
LegislatureNational Assembly
Independence
• Republic established
28 November 1958
• Independence from France
28 November 1960
• Current constitution
12 July 1991
Area
• Total
1,030,000 km2 (400,000 sq mi)[2] (28th)
• Water (%)
0.03
Population
• 2016 estimate
4,301,018[3]
• 2013 census
3,537,368[2]
• Density
3.4/km2 (8.8/sq mi)
GDP (PPP)2018 estimate
• Total
$18.117 billion[4] (134th)
• Per capita
$4,563[4] (140th)
GDP (nominal)2018 estimate
• Total
$5.200 billion[4] (154th)
• Per capita
$1,309[4] (149th)
Gini (2014)Positive decrease 32.6[5]
medium
HDI (2019)Increase 0.546[6]
low · 157th
CurrencyOuguiya (MRU)
Time zoneUTC (GMT)
Driving sideright
Calling code+222
ISO 3166 codeMR
Internet TLD.mr
  1. According to Article 6 of the Constitution: "The national languages are Arabic, Pulaar, Soninke, and Wolof; the official language is Arabic."

Mauritania is a country in northwest Africa. The capital city, which is also the biggest city in the country, is Nouakchott. It is on the Atlantic coast. Its president is General Mohamed Ould Ghazouani.

At 1,030,700 km² (397,929 mi²),[7] Mauritania is the world's 29th-largest country (after Bolivia). It is similar in size to Egypt. The land is flat in most places.

Demographics[change | change source]

Religion[change | change source]

Mauritania Religions
Islam
99.9%
Christianity
0.1%

Mauritania is almost 100% Muslim, most of whom are Sunni. Atheism in Mauritania is punishable by death.[8] On 27 April 2018, The National Assembly passed a law that allows for the death penalty for certain apostasy-related crimes.[9]

Language[change | change source]

Afro-Asiatic languages[change | change source]

Modern Standard Arabic is the official language of Mauritania. Hassaniya is the Arabic dialect that is widely spoken throughout the country. It is mostly used in daily life.

Berber languages[change | change source]

There are also some Berber languages that are spoken in Mauritania. In de south Zenaga is spoken and close to the border with Mali in the southeast Tamasheq (a variety of Tuareg) is spoken. Zenaga is only spoken by a few hundred peoples and seems to be close to disappearance.[10]

Foreign languages[change | change source]

As Mauritania is a former colony of France, it is now part of the Francophonie. French is spoken including African French and Maghreb French.

Niger-Congo languages[change | change source]

There are several Niger-Congo languages that are spoken in Mauritania. These are Wolof, Soninke, Pulaar and Bambara.[11]

Economy[change | change source]

Mauritania exports, 2019

Mauritania is rich in natural resources but has a low GDP.[12] Many people living in Mauritania depend on farming and livestock. Mauritania has a large deposit of iron ore, which is almost half of the country's total exports.

References[change | change source]

  1. "Ould Baya élu président du parlement mauritanien". BBC News Afrique. 9 October 2018. Archived from the original on 14 April 2019. Retrieved 4 May 2019.
  2. 2.0 2.1 "1: Répartition spatiale de la population" (PDF). Recensement Général de la Population et de l'Habitat (RGPH) 2013 (Report) (in French). National Statistical Office of Mauritania. July 2015. p. v. Retrieved 20 December 2015.[permanent dead link]
  3. "World Population Prospects: The 2017 Revision". ESA.UN.org (custom data acquired via website). United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Population Division. Retrieved 10 September 2017.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 "Mauritania". International Monetary Fund. Archived from the original on 22 May 2020. Retrieved 7 June 2020.
  5. "Gini Index coefficient". CIA World Factbook. Retrieved 16 July 2021.
  6. Human Development Report 2020 The Next Frontier: Human Development and the Anthropocene (PDF). United Nations Development Programme. 15 December 2020. pp. 343–346. ISBN 978-92-1-126442-5. Retrieved 16 December 2020.
  7. "The World Factbook — Central Intelligence Agency". www.cia.gov. Archived from the original on 2014-02-09. Retrieved 2009-06-07.
  8. Evans, Robert (9 December 2012). "Atheists around world suffer persecution, discrimination: report". Reuters. Archived from the original on 2 October 2015. Retrieved 7 January 2015.
  9. Mehta, Hemant (17 May 2018). "Mauritania Passes Law Mandating Death Penalty for "Blasphemy"". Patheos. Archived from the original on 17 May 2018. Retrieved 17 May 2018.
  10. "L'arabisation en marche de la Mauritanie: quand une politique d'aménagement linguistique tenace est en passe de réussir (?)". www.unice.fr. Retrieved 2022-04-13.
  11. "What Languages Are Spoken in Mauritania?". WorldAtlas. 2017-08-01. Retrieved 2022-04-13.
  12. International Monetary Fund. Middle East and Central Asia Dept. (2015). Islamic Republic of Mauritania: Selected Issues Paper. International Monetary Fund. pp. 19–22. ISBN 978-1-4843-3657-1. Archived from the original on 22 May 2020. Retrieved 7 June 2020.

Other websites[change | change source]