Mauritania's Prime Minister Lieutenant Colonel Mohammed Ould Haidallah has made a three day visit to France to stress his country's neutrality in the current Western Sahara conflict.
GV EXTERIOR: Elysee Palace in Paris.
SV: Prime Minister Ould Heidallah of Mauritania shakes hands with French President D'Estaing and walks towards waiting newsmen.
SV PAN: (SAME SHOT) Prime Minister Haidallah walks down steps talking to newsmen (Natural sound only)
TV/CU: Prime Minister Haidallah walks to car and enters. (2 shots)
CU/GV: Mauritanian flag on car as vehicle drives away
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Background: Mauritania's Prime Minister Lieutenant Colonel Mohammed Ould Haidallah has made a three day visit to France to stress his country's neutrality in the current Western Sahara conflict. Mauritania relinquished its claim to the disputed territory last month and declared itself neutral. Colonel Ould wants France's diplomatic and military backing for the neutrality declaration and is also looking for financial and technological aid. He met with French President Valery Giscard D'Estaing in Parison Wednesday (19 September).
SYNOPSIS: Colonel Ould Haidallah came to Paris, also to explain to French officials and the President the dangers the Mauritanian government faces from inside and outside the country.
At the Elysee Palace he told President Giscard that protagonists of various sorts were trying to disturb Mauritania's stability.
The Colonel, is the third officer called to lead his country since July 1978. Mauritania's population is split between the ruling Arabs in the north, and the blacks in the south.
He warned the French that any break in the present stability could mean a guerrilla war in the whole region, involving what he called the 'Colonial lobby' ruling in Senegal. He asked the French to practice an even greater neutrality in regards to the countries involved.