Mauritania prez escapes bid on life

Mauritania prez escapes bid on life

Mauritania’s president Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz  appeared was wounded late on Saturday night when a military patrol opened fire on his convoy about 40 km from the capital.

However, on Sunday he made a televised address calling for calm, hours after the incident which he said was “an accident”.

Seen by the West as an ally against al-Qaeda’s increasing presence in the Sahara Desert, Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz has ruled over a northwest African country that has been largely stable since he seized power in a 2008 coup.

“I want to calm all citizens,”Aziz said in a broadcast on state television from his hospital bed. “I want to reassure everyone about my state of health after this incident committed by error.”

Soon after the broadcast, he was flown to former colonial power France for further treatment, a Mauritanian official said. Abdel Aziz won an election in 2009 in the largely desert country, straddles black and Arab Africa on the West coast of the continent.