The Mauritanian national state emerged as a questionable entity in both its historical and social legitimacy. This article considers the cliental relationship that remains within today’s Mauritanian national state and which dominates the political arena. The national state implements the same colonial policy and thereby has become the biggest client, offering favors for obedience and allegiance to it. Today, this is the greatest challenge Mauritania faces to break free from traditional political practice and move towards democratization and a peaceful transfer of power, the separation of powers, the rule of law, and the independence of the judiciary.

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