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State Council cannot convene Parliament: Mauritanian top legislator
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16:39, August 20, 2008

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Messoud Ould Boulkheir, President of Mauritanian National Assembly, said the convening of an extraordinary session of Parliament by the State Council, scheduled for Wednesday, is "juridically invalid," news reaching here said Tuesday.

"Any initiative of such a session without my signature is invalid and juridically ineffective," Ould Boulkheir said in a statement released in the Mauritanian capital of Nouakchott on Tuesday.

"No date has been decided for the holding of an extraordinary session," he added.

Ould Boulkheir recalled that the opening and closing of an extraordinary session of the parliament is part of the exclusive rights of the president of the republic.

He said that Sidi Mohamed Ould Cheikh Abdallahi who was democratically elected in March 2007, is the only legitimate president of Mauritania.

The Mauritanian military staged a coup on Aug. 6 in Nouakchott,and arrested President Abdallahi and Prime Minister Yahya Ould Ahmed Waghf. The coup leaders announced the establishment of the State Council shortly afterwards.

Gen. Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz, leader of the coup and president of the State Council, signed Monday a decree on convening an extraordinary session of Parliament on Wednesday for a trial of the ousted president.


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