The Islamic Republic of Mauritania formed their national Olympic committee, the Comité National Mauritanien (MTN), in 1962 but the International Olympic Committee will not officially recognize them until 1979.
However, due to some fiscal restraints, they were not able to participate in the 1980 Summer Games but they were able to make their debut in the 1984 Summer Olympics held in Los Angeles, California, USA with two athletes, wrestlers Mamadou Diallo and Oumar Samba Sy.
Unfortunately, Diallo was not able to proceed past the elimination round while Sy withdrew after losing to Greece. Since 1984, Mauritania has competed in all of the Summer Games but never with a significant number of athletes.
Oumar Samba Sy will come back in the 1988 Summer Games in Seoul, South Korea. But he will again not be able to get passed the elimination round. He is, however, Mauritania's first-ever Olympian who attended two back-to-back Olympiads. Fatou Dieng made history when she became Mauritania's first female athlete when she competed in the 100 meter sprint in Sydney, Australia.
Mauritania has never won an Olympic medal despite their perfect attendance and, like most of its African neighbors; they have never sent a representative to any of the Winter Olympics.