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A woman traveller in Mauritania

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A woman traveller in Mauritania


I'll spend a week in Mauritania (Nouakchott and countryside) to work in January. Was wondering how to behave in the countryside not to disturb the men!? How to interview them without looking into the eyes (as I heard one has to do there)? What to wear? Any rules of politness that I should be aware of?

Also, will it be necessary to take anti-malaria pills in January, if I stay just a week and close to the capital?

And finally, how's the security situation at the moment?

I would appreciate any answers, thans in advance!

Kiffa, Mauritania
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1. Re: A woman traveller in Mauritania

I don't think you'll have to worry about looking into eye's. Just treat everyone normally and you'll be fine. Out in the desert I found the women did most of the talking but everyone was very friendly. Women would not shake my hand. Follow standard rules if eating in a group.

Long trousers but no need to cover your head.

I spoke to a pilot who was spraying mozzie's and told me malaria stretched as far north as the line from Nouakchott to Kiffa and Ayoun el Atrous. Water, toilets wells etc. are all along this route and the mozzie's followed. I'd take my malaria tabs.

Security should be fine but people were shot on the road to Kiffa and bombs have gone off and as with everywhere it depends if you happen to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. Lots of police and military so I'd try not to worry and just go for it and enjoy yourself.

If your a news person interviewing people then I expect you to have good security before you go off meeting people. I've seen bin Laden stickers in St Louis Senegal on a scooter with an old man watching me, they do have support! Big clampdown might have cleared these people away into the deep desert. I'm guessing!!

Hope that helps...

2. Re: A woman traveller in Mauritania

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Removed on: 2:18 am, April 06, 2010