TelesomDahabshiil
Published On: Wed, Aug 5th, 2020

Moscow building military bases in Africa: Report

Berlin(ANN)-Russia is planning to step up its military cooperation with African countries as part of its new Africa strategy, including building bases in six countries, Germany daily Bild reported Tuesday, citing a secret German Foreign Ministry report.

The classified document on what it calls “Russia’s new Africa ambitions” says Russian President Vladimir Putin had made “Africa a top priority.”

An important aspect of Russia’s advance in Africa is military cooperation with some of the continent’s dictatorial regimes, it said.

“Since 2015, Russia has concluded military cooperation agreements with 21 countries in Africa,” according to the leaked document.

Previously, there were only four military cooperation treaties across the entire continent, it added.

Furthermore, it said, the Kremlin was “contractually assured” it would “be allowed to build military bases in six countries,” namely the Central African Republic, Egypt, Eritrea, Madagascar, Mozambique, and Sudan.

Moreover, Russia’s army is partially secretly and partially officially training soldiers from those countries, according to the report.

For example, 180 Russian army instructors are based in the Central African Republic or elsewhere in Africa, said the report.

“Around 20 Malian soldiers are trained in Russia every year,” it added.

But Russia is not only aiming for a permanent deployment of its troops in Africa but it also increasingly relying on private armies or proxy groups like the Wagner Group — infamous for supporting warlord Khalifa Haftar in Libya — said the report.

Ministry experts labeled the group a Russian “hybrid instrument to exert political, economic, and military influence.”

Kremlin mercenaries could also be deployed to help stabilize dictatorial African regimes, it said.

The capabilities of Russia’s armed forces and mercenaries are “of great interest for autocratic regimes in possible use against their own people,” the report added.

Meanwhile, Russia is already a major arms supplier to the African continent.

With a market share of 37.6%, Russia is the top weapons supplier to Africa, followed by the US with 16%, France with 14%, and China with 9%.

Algeria reportedly remains the biggest recipient of Russian arms in Africa, followed by Egypt, Sudan, and Angola.

Source: Anadolu Agency

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- #Arraale Mohamoud Jama is a freelance journalist and human rights activist with more than 20 years of experience as a professional journalist and human rights activist, as well as a writer and investigative journalist on a wide range of topics related to social issues, human rights, politics and security, economics, democracy, and good governance. He has written extensively on regional and international events, and has worked Somaliland newspapers, and Human rights organization. In 2008, he created the website #Araweelo #News #Network, and is based in Somaliland and is currently managing it; #Arraale is a specialist in investigating and reporting on human rights, democracy, security, and good governance issues. Contact: Info@araweelonews.com jaamac132@gmail.com Send an SMS or MMS to + 252 63 442 5380 whatsapp.com/ + 252 63 442 5380 /https://twitter.com/Araweelonews/https://www.facebook.com/Araweelonews/

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