tuque /tūk/ n Canadian English, var. toque [19th c. Canadian French, from the French toque, from the Basque tauka] 1 A close-fitting knitted cap, often with a long tapering end or tassel or pompom. 2 fig Something quintessentially Canadian.
souq /sūk/ n from the Arabic سوق var. souk 1 An open-air marketplace. 2 fig A central meeting place for the circulation of news and ideas.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Mauritania crisis festers, hula skirts might help

The junta took everything he had. Now he wants revenge.

The general who ousted democratically elected Mauritanian president Sidi Ould Cheikh Abdallahi in an August coup has released the former leader into village arrest (that's like a step up from house arrest), but the president says he will not give up his right to return to his presidential post.

General Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz booted Abdallahi on August 6 after the latter attempted to dismiss Aziz and his fellow ruffian generals.

The European Union has set a deadline of this Thursday - November 20 - for the junta to fully release President Abdallahi and forge an agreement to restore democracy to this mostly deserted country in western Africa, or else face sanctions. Wisely, a meeting has been set for Friday, November 21, between EU and African Union (AU) reps to work on solutions that don't involve sanctions.

Abdallahi's former foreign minister will not be able to attend; he was just arrested by the junta for making disparaging remarks about the military coup on national TV.

The League of Arab States (LAS), the African Maghreb Union (AMU), the International Organization of the Francophonie (IOF), the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC), and the United Nations (UN) are also working with the AU and EU on resolving the crisis. That makes the sum total of acronyms involved:

Unscrambling this anagram, we arrive at the secret solution to the Mauritania revolt:
"Um, use a luau, no if. Ciao"!

In related news, to no one's surprise, Qaddafi backs the junta. In news related to the related news, Qaddafi is now only visible by impressionism.

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