Mauritania Military - 2021


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Military and security forces

Mauritanian Armed Forces: Army, Mauritanian Navy (Marine Mauritanienne), Islamic Republic of Mauritania Air Group (Groupement Aerienne Islamique de Mauritanie, GAIM); Gendarmerie (Ministry of Defense); National Guard (Ministry of Interior) (2021)

Military expenditures

2.8% of GDP (2019 est.)

3% of GDP (2018)

2.9% of GDP (2017)

2.9% of GDP (2016)

2.8% of GDP (2015)

Military and security service personnel strengths

the Mauritanian Armed Forces have approximately 16,000 active personnel (15,000 Army; 700 Navy; 300 Air Force); est. 3,000 Gendarmerie; est. 2,000 National Guard (2021)

Military equipment inventories and acquisitions

the Mauritanian Armed Forces' inventory is limited and made up largely of older French and Soviet-era equipment; since 2010, Mauritania has received a limited amount of mostly secondhand military equipment from a variety of suppliers, including Brazil, China, France, and Turkey (2020)

Military deployments

450 Central African Republic (MINUSCA) (Jan 2021)

Military service age and obligation

18 is the legal minimum age for voluntary military service; no conscription (2019)

Military - note

since a spate of terrorist attacks in the 2000s, including a 2008 attack on a military base in the country’s north that resulted in the deaths of 12 soldiers, the Mauritanian Government has increased the defense budget and military equipment acquisitions, enhanced military training, heightened security cooperation with its neighbors and the international community, and built up the military’s special operations and civil-military affairs forces

Mauritania is part of a five-nation anti-jihadist task force known as the G5 Sahel Group, set up in 2014 with Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, and Niger; it has committed 550 troops and 100 gendarmes to the force; in early 2020, G5 Sahel military chiefs of staff agreed to allow defense forces from each of the states to pursue terrorist fighters up to 100 km into neighboring countries; the G5 force is backed by the UN, US, and France; G5 troops periodically conduct joint operations with French forces deployed to the Sahel under Operation Barkhane (2020)

NOTE: The information regarding Mauritania on this page is re-published from the 2021 World Fact Book of the United States Central Intelligence Agency and other sources. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Mauritania 2021 information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Mauritania 2021 should be addressed to the CIA or the source cited on each page.

This page was last modified 16 Dec 23, Copyright © 2023 ITA all rights reserved.