January 25, 2022

News

News Network

Mauritania Travel Advisory

11 min read

Reconsider travel to Mauritania due to COVID-19.  Exercise increased caution in Mauritania due to crime and terrorism.  Some areas have increased risk.  Read the entire Travel Advisory.

Read the Department of State’s COVID-19 page before you plan any international travel.     

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a Level 3 Travel Health Notice for Mauritania due to COVID-19.    

Mauritania has lifted stay at home orders, and resumed some transportation options and business operations.  Visit the Embassy’s COVID-19 page for more information on COVID-19 in Mauritania.  

Do Not Travel To:

  • Areas designated as off limits by the Mauritanian military due to crime and terrorism.

Country Summary: Violent crimes, such as mugging, armed robbery, and assault, are common. Local police lack the resources to respond effectively to serious crimes.

Terrorists may attack with little or no warning, targeting places frequented by Westerners.

The U.S. government has limited ability to provide emergency services to U.S. citizens in Mauritania as U.S. government employees must obtain special authorization to travel outside Nouakchott. U.S. government employees may travel only during daylight hours and are prohibited from walking alone outside of designated areas and times.

Read the Country Information page.

If you decide to travel to Mauritania:

  • See the U.S. Embassy’s webpage regarding COVID-19.
  • Visit the CDC’s webpage on Travel and COVID-19.
  • Use caution when walking or driving at night.
  • Always carry a copy of your U.S. passport and visa (if applicable). Keep original documents in a secure location. 
  • Monitor local media for breaking events and be prepared to adjust your plans.
  • Be aware of your surroundings.
  • Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive Alerts and make it easier to locate you in an emergency.
  • Follow the Department of State on Facebook and Twitter.
  • Review the Crime and Safety Report for Mauritania.
  • U.S. citizens who travel abroad should always have a contingency plan for emergency situations. Review the Traveler’s Checklist.

Areas Designated Off-Limits by the Mauritanian Military – Do Not Travel

The government of Mauritania designates certain areas off-limits to foreigners and most Mauritanians. These “No Movement Zones” are extremely dangerous due to their proximity to Mali, where armed groups engaged in an active insurgency carry out cross-border attacks into Mauritania. The government of Mauritania does not maintain a substantial presence in these areas and thus police are unable to respond to most incidents there. In addition, cell phone coverage and paved roads are nonexistent. U.S. officials are unable to travel to these places. Since the boundaries of such areas frequently change, U.S. citizens should pay attention to all posted signs and notices of restricted entry. They should presume the following areas are off-limits:

  • All areas north of the Tropic of Cancer
  • All areas east of 08⁰ longitude (West of Greenwich) situated within 100km of the Mali Border

Visit our website for Travel to High-Risk Areas.

Last Update: Reissued with updates to COVID-19 information.

News Network

  • Program on VMI Case Recalls Ginsburg’s Crusade for Gender Equality
    In U.S Courts
    A recent program honoring the 25th anniversary of a landmark case allowing women to enroll in the Virginia Military Institute (VMI) also celebrated a broader theme: Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s decades-long effort to remove gender bias from state and federal laws.
    [Read More…]
  • Taxpayer Service: IRS Could Improve the Taxpayer Experience by Using Better Service Performance Measures
    In U.S GAO News
    The Internal Revenue Service's (IRS) mission and strategic plan state expectations for IRS to improve the taxpayer experience and services it provides. However, IRS and its divisions that manage programs serving the largest taxpayer groups—the Wage and Investment (W&I) and the Small Business/Self-Employed (SB/SE) divisions—did not have performance goals to specify the desired improvements. For example, W&I aligned its service programs to IRS's strategic objectives for taxpayer services that state broad types of management activities such as monitoring the taxpayer experience and addressing issues. However, it did not have performance goals that specify outcomes to improve the taxpayer experience, such as reducing taxpayer wait times for telephone assistance. Because IRS and these two divisions do not have performance goals for improving the taxpayer experience, IRS does not have related performance measures. IRS has many performance measures—including more than 80 for W&I and SB/SE—for assessing the services it provides, such as related to timeliness and accuracy of information provided to taxpayers. However, these existing measures do not assess improvements to the taxpayer experience, such as whether tax processes were simpler or specific services met taxpayers' needs. The division-level measures also lack targets for improving the taxpayer experience. Further, the existing measures do not capture all of the key factors identified in Office of Management and Budget guidance for how customers experience federal services, including customer satisfaction and how easy it was to receive the services. As a result, IRS does not have complete information about how well it is satisfying taxpayers and improving their experiences. IRS analyzes its taxpayer service measures to compare performance with targets but the analyses provide few insights and no recommendations to improve the taxpayer experience, such as to provide more timely tax filing guidance. Also, IRS does not have a process to use service measures to guide decisions on allocating resources to improve the taxpayer experience. As a result, IRS is challenged to use performance data to balance resource allocation for efforts to improve the taxpayer experience compared with other IRS efforts. Finally, IRS reports limited information to the public about performance related to the taxpayer experience for transparency and accountability. The table below summarizes important management practices that IRS did not fully follow to provide taxpayers a top-quality service experience. According to IRS, providing top-quality service is a critical part of its mission to help taxpayers understand and meet their tax responsibilities. Congress, the National Taxpayer Advocate, and the administration have recognized the importance of improving how taxpayers experience IRS services. Setting goals and objectives with related performance measures and targets are important tools to focus an agency's activities on achieving mission results. GAO was asked to review IRS's customer service performance measures. This report assesses IRS's (1) goals and objectives to improve the taxpayer experience; (2) performance measures to support improved experiences; and (3) use of performance information to improve the experience, allocate resources, and report performance. To assess IRS's goals, measures, targets, and use of them, GAO compared IRS's practices to key practices in results-oriented management. GAO is making 7 recommendations, including that IRS identify performance goals, measures, and targets; as well as analyze performance; develop processes to make decisions on resources needed; and report performance on improving the taxpayer experience. IRS indicated that it generally agreed with the recommendations, but that details around their implementation were under consideration and would be provided at a later date. For more information, contact Jessica Lucas-Judy at (202) 512-9110 or LucasJudyJ@gao.gov.
    [Read More…]
  • Military Pay: Army National Guard Personnel Mobilized to Active Duty Experienced Significant Pay Problems
    In U.S GAO News
    In light of the recent mobilizations associated with the war on terrorism, GAO was asked to determine if controls used to pay mobilized Army Guard personnel provided assurance that such pays were accurate and timely. This testimony focuses on the pay experiences of Army Guard soldiers at selected case study units and deficiencies with respect to controls over processes, human capital, and automated systems.The existing processes and controls used to provide pay and allowances to mobilized Army Guard personnel are so cumbersome and complex that neither DOD nor, more importantly, the mobilized Army Guard soldiers could be reasonably assured of timely and accurate payroll payments. Weaknesses in these processes and controls resulted in over- and underpayments and late active duty payments and, in some cases, large erroneously assessed debts, to mobilized Army Guard personnel. The end result of these weaknesses is to severely constrain DOD's ability to provide active duty pay to these personnel, many of whom were risking their lives in combat in Iraq and Afghanistan. In addition, these pay problems have had a profound impact on individual soldiers and their families and may adversely impact on decisions to stay in the Army Guard. For example, many soldiers and their families were required to spend considerable time, sometimes while the soldiers were deployed in remote, hostile environments overseas, seeking corrections to active duty pays and allowances. The pay process, involving potentially hundreds of DOD, Army, and Army Guard organizations and thousands of personnel, was not well understood or consistently applied with respect to determining (1) the actions required to make timely, accurate pays to mobilized soldiers, and (2) the organization responsible for taking the required actions. With respect to human capital, we found weaknesses including (1) insufficient resources allocated to pay processing, (2) inadequate training related to existing policies and procedures, and (3) poor customer service. Several systems issues were also significant factors impeding accurate and timely payroll payments to mobilized Army Guard soldiers, including (1) nonintegrated systems, (2) limitations in system processing capabilities, and (3) ineffective system edits.
    [Read More…]
  • Mongolia National Day and 100th Anniversary
    In Crime Control and Security News
    Antony J. Blinken, [Read More…]
  • Acting Assistant Secretary Reeker’s Travel to Italy, Albania, and North Macedonia
    In Crime Control and Security News
    Office of the [Read More…]
  • Breaking Barriers: The NHL’s Willie O’Ree, Documentary Film & Global Discussion on Racial Equality
    In Crime Control and Security News
    Office of the [Read More…]
  • Department Press Briefing – February 11, 2021
    In Crime Control and Security News
    Ned Price, Department [Read More…]
  • McAllen man guilty of selling child pornography
    In Justice News
    A 34-year-old south [Read More…]
  • Secretary Blinken’s Meeting with Israeli Foreign Minister and Alternate Prime Minister Lapid
    In Crime Control and Security News
    Office of the [Read More…]
  • Central Pacific 5-Day Graphical Tropical Weather Outlook
    In Uncategorized
    ZCZC HFOTWOCP ALL TTAA00 [Read More…]
  • Foreign Assistance: Reporting of Defense Articles and Services Provided through Drawdowns Needs to Be Improved
    In U.S GAO News
    Since 1961, the President has had special statutory authority to order the "drawdown" of defense articles--such as aircraft, vehicles, various weapons, and spare parts--and services or military education and training from Department of Defense (DOD) and military service inventories and transfer them to foreign countries or international organizations. Drawdowns give the President the ability to respond to U.S. foreign policy and national security objectives, such as counternarcotics efforts, peacekeeping needs, and unforeseen military and nonmilitary emergencies, by providing military assistance without first seeking additional legislative authority or appropriations from Congress. The Defense Security Cooperation Agency's reports to Congress on the costs and delivery status of drawdowns are inaccurate and incomplete. Two principal problems contribute to the agency's inability to meet the reporting requirements. First, its information system for recording drawdown data is outmoded and difficult to use--service drawdown reports are in different formats, and any conversion errors have to be manually corrected. Second, the services do not regularly provide updates to the agency on drawdown costs and deliveries, and available information sometimes does not get into the system. Drawdowns benefit the United States and foreign recipients primarily by providing the President the flexibility to address foreign policy and national security objectives quickly. Drawdowns also allow the President to provide defense articles and services to improve foreign recipients' capability to conduct military and police missions in support of U.S. foreign policy. Other benefits cited include improved military-to-military relations between the U.S. military services and the foreign recipients and expanded markets for U.S. defense firms. According to U.S. and foreign military officials, the use of drawdowns presents some concerns. Because drawdowns are used to quickly address U.S. national interests and emergencies, the costs associated with a drawdown, such as refurbishment and transportation, are not budgeted for by the services and are not reimbursed.
    [Read More…]
  • [Request for Reconsideration of Sustained Protest of Labor Contract Award]
    In U.S GAO News
    The Department of Labor requested reconsideration of a decision which sustained a protest against a contract award for social services. GAO sustained the protest because of: (1) Labor's agreement with one of two offerers within the competitive range following best and final offers concerning government-furnished property; and (2) a resulting cost analysis which possibly prejudiced the protester. GAO recommended the reopening of negotiations with a clear statement of the requirements and termination of the awardee's contract should the protester's proposal prove more advantageous. Labor requested reconsideration on the grounds that the protester was not prejudiced by the negotiations with the awardee and contended that the recommended corrective action was inappropriate. GAO found that it was not clear that the changes effected by the negotiations were not prejudicial to the protester because a reallocation of savings which followed best and final offers allowed the awardee to reduce its bid. Furthermore, GAO found that Labor presented no convincing evidence that GAO erred in concluding that the protester might have successfully competed had it received the same access to government-owned property which had been developed by the awardee. Therefore, GAO held that the negotiations after best and final offers resulted in a substantial change in contract requirements which possibly prejudiced the protester. Accordingly, GAO affirmed its prior decision; however, since less than 3 months' performance remained on the contract, and Labor had decided not to exercise the contract's option but to issue a new solicitation, GAO had no objection to Labor's not reopening negotiations on the original contract.
    [Read More…]
  • Charleston County School District Agrees to Provide Language Access for Limited English Proficient Parents
    In Crime News
    Today the Justice Department announced a settlement agreement with the Charleston County School District to resolve its investigation into complaints that the school district failed to communicate essential information to thousands of Spanish-speaking, limited English proficient (LEP) parents, denying their children full and equal access to the district’s education programs and services. The Civil Rights Division and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of South Carolina conducted the investigation under Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Equal Educational Opportunities Act of 1974.
    [Read More…]
  • Deputy Secretary Sherman’s Meeting on Venezuelan Refugee Assistance in Uruguay
    In Crime Control and Security News
    Office of the [Read More…]
  • Secretary Blinken’s Meeting with Swiss President and Foreign Minister Cassis
    In Crime Control and Security News
    Office of the [Read More…]
  • Georgia Man Sentenced to Prison for Running Ponzi Scheme
    In Crime News
    A Georgia man has been sentenced to 60 months in prison followed by three years of supervised release for running a Ponzi scheme that ensnared over a hundred victims, and induced college students and others to part with money for his own personal benefit.
    [Read More…]
  • Justice Department Commemorates National Domestic Violence Awareness Month
    In Crime News
    The Justice Department joins law enforcement partners, victim services professionals, advocates and communities across the country in observing October as National Domestic Violence Awareness Month and announces more than $476 million in Office on Violence Against Women (OVW) grants. The funding supports projects that meaningfully address the needs of underserved and marginalized survivors, improve access to justice, enhance survivor safety, hold accountable those who have caused harm, and provide training and technical assistance to an array of professionals and systems working to address sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence and stalking in every state and territory, as well as dozens of tribal communities.
    [Read More…]
  • Deputy Secretary Biegun’s Visit to Bangladesh
    In Crime Control and Security News
    Office of the [Read More…]
  • U.S. Special Envoy for Yemen Lenderking’s Travel to Saudi Arabia and Oman
    In Crime Control and Security News
    Office of the [Read More…]
  • U.S. Seeks to Recover More Than $300 Million in Additional Assets Traceable to Funds Allegedly Misappropriated from Malaysian Sovereign Wealth Fund
    In Crime News
    The Justice Department announced today the filing of civil forfeiture complaints seeking the forfeiture and recovery of more than $300 million in additional assets allegedly associated with an international conspiracy to launder funds misappropriated from 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB), a Malaysian sovereign wealth fund.
    [Read More…]
Network News © 2005 Area.Control.Network™ All rights reserved.