Africa: 31stafrican Union Summit - Mauritania Rolls Out Red Carpet

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Protesters use catapult against police in Bamenda, Cameroon. Anglophone civil society leaders and several supporters were jailed and then released in 2017. English speakers have been calling for equal treatment in the majority French-speaking nation. (file photo)

The assembly from June 25-July 2, 2018 will implement the free trade accord signed earlier this year and also discuss corruption.

Delegates to the 31st Ordinary Session of the Assembly of Heads of State and Government of the African Union, AU, begin meeting in the Mauritanian capital, Nouakchott on June 25, 2018 during which they will discuss the theme, "Winning the Fight Against Corruption:

A Sustainable Path to Africa's Transformation." In readiness for the guests, Mauritanian leader Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz on June 23, 2018 toured streets in the capital to ensure that a general clean-up campaign had passed off successfully.

The authorities have also emblazoned the city with new or refurbished facilities and infrastructure. A brand new international conference centre that can receive more than 60 delegations has been built near the Nouakchott- Oumtounsy Airport, while a hotel and 120 mansions have equally been constructed to lodge summit participants, Jeune Afrique magazine reported.

The conference centre has a capacity of 4,500 seats, 300 offices and presidential relax areas. Mauritanian Government Spokesman Dr. Mohamed Lemine Ould said the summit was certain to be a huge success as almost 30 Heads of State have confirmed their participation. Mauritania in 2016 hosted the Arab League and African Union summits, thanks to President Ould Abdel Aziz's rising international diplomatic profile.

Apart from tackling corruption, African leaders are to put in place the Continental Free Trade Area, CFTA whose accord was signed on March 21, 2018 in Kigali, Rwanda by 55 states.

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