Saleh Ould Hanenna

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Saleh Ould Hanenna (born 1965 or 1966) is a former Mauritanian soldier and political figure.

Hanenna served in the Mauritanian Army and rose to the rank of Major before being forced out in 2000. In June 2003, he led an attempted coup, aiming to overthrow President Maaouya Ould Taya. He commanded a rebel section of the Army during two days of heavy fighting in Nouakchott. With the failure of the coup Hanenna initially escaped capture, and formed a group called the Knights of Change with Mohamed Ould Cheikhna, but he was arrested on October 9, 2004.[1]

The Government of Mauritania accused Hanenna of attempting to organise coups on two further occasions, in August and September 2004, with the alleged backing of Libya and Burkina Faso.[1] A death sentence was recommended at his subsequent trial, but he was instead given life imprisonment at the conclusion of the trial on February 3, 2005.[2]

In August 2005, Ely Ould Mohamed Vall led a successful coup in the country. The Military Council for Justice and Democracy which subsequently took charge of the government released Hanenna in an amnesty in early September.[3]

On January 9, 2007, Hanenna, the president of the Mauritanian Union for Change (HATEM), was unanimously chosen by that party's executive committee as its candidate in the March 2007 presidential election.[4] He took sixth position in the poll, with 7.65% of the votes cast,[5] and subsequently backed Ahmed Ould Daddah for the second round.[6]

Hanenna currently serves as President of the Coordination of Democratic Opposition, a political coalition made up of parties opposed to the current Aziz led government of Mauritania.[7]


  1. ^ a b "MAURITANIA: Government arrests mastermind behind coup plots", IRIN Africa, October 12, 2004.
  2. ^ "Mauritania coup trial ends with 84 guilty verdicts" Archived 2006-10-17 at the Wayback Machine., Middle East Online, February 3, 2005.
  3. ^ "MAURITANIA: Junta declares general amnesty for political prisoners", IRIN, September 5, 2005.
  4. ^ "Le parti "Hatem" présente M. Salah Ould Hanena, candidat aux élections présidentielles" Archived 2007-09-28 at the Wayback Machine., Agence Mauritanienne d'Information, January 9, 2007 (in French).
  5. ^ "Le conseil constitutionnel proclame les résultats du premier tour de l'élection présidentielles du 11 mars 2007"[permanent dead link], Agence Mauritanienne d'Information, March 15, 2007 (in French).
  6. ^ "The two run-off candidates continue to woo the Mauritanian voters"[permanent dead link], African Press Agency, March 16, 2007.
  7. ^ Mauritania Opposition Demands Election After President Is Shot, Bloomberg Business Week, November 2, 2012.
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