Teachers protest in Mauritania 27 Mauritanian teachers were arrested last week according to reports The teachers had been occupying the ministry of education in protest at their arbitrary transfer to far-flung regions of the country. The transfers were punishment for their participation in strikes last year for improved pay and conditions. The sit-in was attacked by security forces who arrested the teachers as well as journalists who were covering the occupation. The Arabic Network for Human Rights Information ((ANHRI) condemned the repression. They said in a statement reported on the Allafrica website: "The persistence of the authorities to deal with the peaceful sit-in by using the security repression and the arrest of a lot of them are a violation to the right to peaceful demonstrations and sit-in. Such violation exposes the intransigence of the authorities in relation with the legitimate demands of the sit-in. In particularly as the decision of transferring of them was a result of previous participations in protest events which they have organized with their colleagues to call for the improvement of their payments and living; which was depicted by the authorities as it is a conspiracy made by the opposition forces". Teachers in Mauritania were involved in the struggle for democracy and basic rights in that country at the time of the so-called Arab Spring and have taken part in a series of strikes and actions over the last period for proper salaries and education funding. Amongst their demands on one strike in 2011 was the provision of money for chalk. Although Mauritania is an oil-producing country and has other natrial resources, the majority of people - 53% live in poverty.