Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs David Hale visited Nouakchott February 12, where he met President Ghazounai, Prime Minister Sidiya, and Foreign Minister Ahmed. Under Secretary Hale reiterated America’s support for Mauritanian efforts to develop indigenous solutions to improve security, governance, and development throughout the region. He encouraged the government to strengthen protections against human trafficking and improve respect for human rights. While in Nouakchott, Under Secretary Hale met with the G5 Sahel Permanent Secretary Maman Sidikou. He expressed strong support for the G5 Sahel and urged progress across all four G5 pillars. The Under Secretary also underscored strong American support for increased engagement between ECOWAS and the G5 Sahel.