Mauritania

The Supreme Islamic Council which iscomposed of five members nominated by the President of the Republic. It issuesopinions on matters on which it is consulted by the President of the Republic. ?         TheEconomic and Social Council which is requested by the President of the Republicto give its views on draft laws, orders and decrees of an economic and socialnature and on bills of the same kind submitted to him. It may also be consultedby the President of the Republic on any economic or social matter of concern tothe State.

To sum up, Mauritania was firstinhabited by blacks and Berbers, and it was a center for the Berber Almoravidmovement in the 11th century, which sought to spread Islam through westernAfrica. It was first explored by the Portuguese in the 15th century, but by the19th century the French had gained control. France organized the area into aterritory in 1904, and in 1920 it became one of the colonies that constitutedFrench West Africa. In 1946, it was named a French overseas territory.Mauritania became an independentnation on Nov.

28, 1960, and was admitted to the United Nations in 1961.Mauritania started its march towarddemocracy in November 2006, when local and regional elections were heldthroughout the country. Presidential elections followed in March 2007. None ofthe 19 candidates won more than 50% of the vote in the first round, and the twotop candidates, Sidi Ould Sheik Abdellahi, a former government minister, andAhmed Ould Daddah, an opposition leader, faced off in the country’s first-eversecond round of voting. Abdellahi prevailed in the runoff to become thecountry’s first democratically elected president.Virtually all Mauritanians are SunniMuslims. They adhere to the Maliki Mezhep (understanding way), one of the fourSunni schools of Islamic understanding ways. Since independence in 1960,Mauritania has been an Islamic republic.

The Constitutional Charter of 1985declares Islam the state religion and sharia the law of the land.Mauritania is a presidentialrepublic. The government bureaucracy is composed of ministries, specialagencies, and parastatal companies. The Ministry of Interior controls a systemof regional governors and prefects modeled on the French system of localadministration. Under this system, Mauritania is divided into 13 regions(wilaya), including the capital district, Nouakchott.

Control is tightlyconcentrated in the executive branch of the central government, but a series ofnational and municipal elections since 1992 have produced some decentralization,and efforts to decentralize the government continue.Mauritania’s bicameral legislatureis composed of the lower house (National Assembly) directly elected to a 5-yearterm through universal suffrage, and the upper house (Senate) whose members areelected to 6-year terms by municipal councilors.   The Role ofIslam in MauritaniaFirst of all, Islam emerged in theregion of Mauritania with the first military campaign intervention SaharanAfrica from northern Mauritania first time with the Islamic Commander Habib ibnAbi Ubayd ibn Uqba ibn Nafie, in the reign of Caliph Hisham bin Abdul Malik in117 A.H.  After that, Islam spreadsouthward into West Africa, with the movement of Muslim traders and craftsmenand later with the founders of Islamic brotherhoods. Although the brotherhoods(Sufism and Tariqa) played a role in the early expansion of Islam, it was notuntil the nineteenth century that these religious orders assumed importancewhen they attempted to make religion a force for expanding identities andloyalties beyond the limits of kinship.

The relative peace brought to the areaby French administration and the growing resentment of colonial rulecontributed to the rapid rise in the power and influence of the brotherhoods.In recent decades, these orders have opposed tribalism and have been anindispensable element in the growth of nationalist sentiment.The Islamization of Mauritania was agradual process that spanned more than 500 years. Beginning slowly throughcontacts with Berber and Arab merchants engaged in the important caravan tradesand rapidly advancing through the Almoravid conquests, Islamization did nottake firm hold until the arrival of Yemeni Arabs in the 12th and13th centuries and was not complete until several centuries later. GradualIslamization was accompanied by a process of Arabization as well, during whichthe Berber masters of Mauritania lost power.During the colonial time, Francetried to enter the Mauritanian education by creating new schools, supportingthe Mauritanian traditional schools (Mahdharas), even they tried to make someagreement with some scholars to give them a lots of money and in return theywill give France opportunities to teach French language in their schools, butno one even one scholar (Alim/Cheikh) accepted that, according to them it wasHaram to teach the colonial’s language or to let Muslims student to go to theFrench schools.

When Mauritania became an independent state, it was normal tobe an Islamic State because till it has 100% Muslim Pop. However, “Islam is thereligion of the people and the state.” Historically was the main gate for the west and center Africa in thecase of the spread of Islam, several Ulemas (Islamic Scholars) went todifferent places, countries there for that reason and still the Mauritanian arepopular by their scientific and Islamist named “chinghity”, and the Mauritaniangovernments from the independence till nowadays keep at the historicalresponsibility towards Africa for example, every year especially in Ramadan month,hundreds of Ulemas go by the states supports to all African countries to teachMuslims Societies there and to spread Islamic knowledge there, this religiousresponsibilities are organized officially by the Mauritanian Ministry ofIslamic Affairs.

From the political window, Islam isthe main factors of national unity, so it plays a vital role in a religioussociety like the Mauritanian people, where every Political parties, civilsociety organizations… etc. always try to keep their goals, visions, and agendarelated and take that in the consideration, because they know that societycannot accept any kind of underrated Islam.The Economic IssueEconomy, in all of its aspects, tries to find asolution for what the economists name as “the economic issue”, which is, inbrief, “the reflection of the growing needs and the scarcity of the resourcesthat would meet those needs”.  On the one hand, human being has several needsbecause of their natural and innate desire for more, depending on a society’sdevelopment or underdevelopment and changes and re-fashionings of lifestylesmake two sentences here, too much for one and living conditions from one socialcontext to the other, and also depending on the steady increase in populationand the decrease in death rates due to the steady development in health andlife standards. On the other hand, however, there is the scarcity of the meansavailable to satisfy all those desires and growing needs.       Even though the means to satisfy these needs haveproven to be valid for other substantial uses (different uses for one singlemeans), they were never enough, as the economic issue kept popping in differentaspects. This can be generally summarized into the constant inability of thesesatisfactions means to keep up with the growing needs. Thus hypotheses andopinions striving to establish persistent and stable solutions have beennumerous due to differences in estimating and picturing the original source ofthis economic issue in the first place.

  Socialism considers that the economic issue alwayssprings from the “contradiction between the production form and the nature ofdistribution relations”. However, according to Capitalism, the roots of theproblem lie in the shortage in natural resources (because of the limitations ofland and the inability to expand it and increase its natural resources in orderto meet human needs). Thus, this is how these two profane approaches generallyperceive the economic issue.  Islamic Systems[1]It is significant number of those who refuse toadopt Islamic morals and practices as lifestyle, sometimes out of sheer ignorance;at other times out of willful negligence. This repulsive and uncompromisingattitude is not reflected in other aspect of people’s life as it is in theirdaily – political as well as economical – experience. Those who stick to thisattitude seem to forget, or pretend to have forgotten, that support of theimplementation of such solution are neither philosophizing about an IdealRepublic nor they are trying to invent a dreamlike and imaginary world.Instead, they are just rediscovering life principles that had once been the keyto bridging the gap between Theory and Practice within some Islamic systemsthat colored all aspects of communal life: governmental, economical, and societal,despite the different belief systems it contained, the different ethnic groupsit consisted of, the different geographical areas it covered, and the differentperiods of time over which it exercised its rule.

   Islam is a set of rules and creeds.  Faith is its core creed; its rules andcornerstones are formed by set of of Sharia Law systems which aim to organizepeople’s affairs. The differences and variations within these systems ofrelationships have engendered systems as different and variable as thefollowing: The Social System: is the system that setsthe codes for the meeting between the two sexes: male and female during whichthe type of their relationship and all of its outcomes are defined (Al-Nabhani,p.

9); for instance, forbidding non-natural relations between a male and afemale (being alone together) or when the woman is able to demand divorce.However, the business she can establish and the inheritance she can get fallsunder the economic system.The Government System: is the system which specifies the nature of thestate, its characteristics, rules, institutions, apparatuses, foundations,together with the ideas, notions, and values according to which state affairsare regulated, in addition to the constitution and laws which are implementedby the state (Al-Nabhani, p.

13-15).The Economic System: economy is about how to manage your money, how tothrive, how to secure its sources and look for others (Economic Science), andhow to distribute it (the economic system). The economic system is therefore asystem that looks at how to distribute wealth among people according to theirperception of life (Al-Masri, p.

9 and Al-Nbahani, p. 57).In a nutshell, objecting to the sovereignty ofIslamic Systems over daily life matters under the pretext of their inability tobe implemented or invalidity of the present day temporal and spatial contextsis nothing but a claim that defies right and contravenes reality.  There is no room to discuss this issue herebut we have limited ourselves to just mentioning it out of respect for a systemthat is now perceived as a historical achievement. The Islamic approach – and Islamic economy is onlyone of its specialized apparatuses – which prevailed from Hegira until theoverthrow of the Islamic caliphate in 1336 Hijri including & containing allthe ups and downs that it witnessed as it went through peace and turmoil. Itwas alternately carried out by two authorities: The Governor and the Judge. Thegovernor was the decision maker, Imam and leader who must abide by Sharia law;the Judge was the one who settles up disputes between conflicting parties andthe one to whom people could plead even against the Imam.It has been successively reported through HadithMutawatir that judges, since the time of the prophet, peace and blessings ofAllah be upon him, had been implementing Islamic Sharia laws in every aspect oflife, whether settling up matters in the disputes among Muslims themselves orbetween Muslims and other people.

   The closest example to that are the judiciary andcourts records that have been preserved in Istanbul, Damascus, and Baghdad…etc. The Implementation of Sharia generally revolves around five aspects,namely, economy, society, education, government and foreign policy (Zayn, p.401).

Explaining and extrapolating the Islamicexperience – in terms of government – is bound up by two dimensions that shouldbe observed. First, this extrapolation should not be inspired from the enemiesof Islam, such as Orientalists and their peers. Instead, it should be based onwhat the Islamic Ulama (scholars) have themselves established in order topreserve its essence and reality away from false misconceptions. The seconddimension has to do with imposing over-generalizations on an entire community.

It is methodologically wrong to judge a given community through individualhistory or even through particular micro histories such as those of princes,poets, etc… For example, judging the entirety of the rule of the UmayyadCaliphate through that of Yazid Ibn Muawiya is both limiting and limited.

Thesame thing applies to any attempt to judge the Abbasid society through itssingers and poets as an era of debauchery and unjust rule. It is likewise verylimiting to judge the same society as ascetic and isolationist through onesingle book such as Al-Ghazali’s Revivalof Religious Sciences. From what has been previously said, we canconclude that the success of the Islamic system manifested itself through twoprominent aspects, namely: Islamic Intellectual Leadership which has made itpossible for Arabs to grow from shepherds to masters and leaders of nations andfrom decadence to renaissance enlightened by Islam.The Islamic Umma culturally, civilly andscientifically pioneering the world for 12 century, thus proved the success ofits leadership, which is in itself a success of Islam  that attests to its eligibility to lead theworld.

  Given the importance of money specifically andeconomy in general, Muslim Ulama (scholars) gave special attention to the conceptualizationof Islamic economy. Different definitions ensued out of this conceptualization,and the most prominent are:Some economic researchers define Islamic Economyas “the economic doctrine of Islam in which economic life is regulatedaccording to the teachings of Islam by means of the methodological tools andintellectual assets that this doctrine possesses and which are constituted outof Islam’s ethical, scientific economy and historical ideas that are connectedto political economy or the explanation of the historical analysis of humansocieties (Al-Sadr, 1968)”.Some others consider Islamic Economy as “a guidingand regulating force for economic activity according to Islamic guidelines andeconomic policies. (Al-Fanjari, 1972, p.55-56)”.Some other writers tend to believe that it is “theset of general economic principles that we extract from Quran, Sunnah and theeconomic structures that we construct upon those principles bearing in mindhistorical and contextual change. (Al-Fanjari, 1972, p.

56 A)”.Another definition is that it is “the set of rulesand Sharia laws that regulate money gain, expenditure and growth prospects (Al-Qahtani,2002, p. 2)”.On the basis of the previous definitions we canconclude that the Islamic Economy is “a set of rules, regulations and toolswhich are applied to the economic activity inside a Muslim society – as it hadalready been applied throughout the history of Islam – to solve its economic problemsas regards production, distribution and exchange issues. This system alsoincludes all what is related to the distribution, ownership and handling ofwealth. Islam has introduced specific principles and codes that involve adistinguished economic policy. These principles and this policy have beenminutely implemented during the Prophet’s, Peace and Blessings be upon Him, eraand to which the Khulafa Rashidun who came after him were fully committed.

Muslimrulers and Imams throughout the history of Islam sticked to these principles todifferent degrees.The political vision fromthe Islamic perspective according to most Islamic scholars nowadays is based onthe three following principles:Islamic reference:  based onthe Islamic political understanding as the only accepted resource, starts withthe Holy Quran goes through the Prophet PBUH’s speeches and narrations, and byfollowing the known Islamic scholars and figures Islamic thought. At the sametime when we accept the Islamic origin resources we take in our considerationand believe that diligence is the renewal mechanism in religion and its pathsevery time and place in Mauritania.National affiliation: By this principle, Mauritanian means that beingfrom Mauritania or any other country does mean aiming to uphold them and takecare of the internal unity and security as well. Patriotism is a principle,characteristic and goal, and build the past homelands renewal and rebuild inorder to serve the interests of the present and hopes for the future, and therequirements of this affiliation protecting the national unity of the country’svarious races, categories and destinations, and rejecting all racism anddivisive calls or actions.Democratic choice andoption: Finally, MauritaniansMuslims society (100% Muslim country) agree that the Democracy is the bestchooses, pluralism and peaceful transfer of power is a strategic choose and optno hesitation in that, and reject tyranny and its justifications andunilateralism and its justification also.

We consider that democracy byallowing the atmosphere of freedom and competition, control and transparencyvalve development and progress and the Renaissance, and our peaceful takes theorigins of Islam and tolerance platform, and rejects extremism and violence, andcondemn terrorism whatever its source and all forms of abuse on the lives andproperty of innocent people, whatever their beliefs, nationalities and ideas. [1] . There is a great debate about the titleand the extent to which it corresponds with reality on the basis of whether ornot we can agree on what is meant by “economic Islam or Islamic economyand whether an Islamic economy does actually exist. “We are not concerned here with resolving thismatter nor with discussing it as much as we are interested in a quick look atthe most important features of this concept from the time-space mentioned, andwe will use” Islamic economic doctrine ” to refer to the applicationof the general concept.

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