Moscow, October 21, 2019 (CABNC) Russia’s President Vladimir Putin has accused western nations of blackmailing Africa while he vowed that Russia’s foreign policy priorities – improving ties and trade with Africa will help develop the African nations without stringent conditions attached.
Mr Puttin described in an interview with TASS News Agency how an array of Western countries are resorting to pressure, intimidation and blackmail of sovereign African governments. He made a distinction between what he called Russia’s “positive” agenda on the continent, with the “geopolitical games” of others there. “They are using such methods to try to return lost influence and dominance in their former colonies in a new guise and rushing to pump out maximum profits and to exploit the continent,” he said
Ahead of a summit with African leaders, Russia will be hosting 47 African leaders at the 23-24 October summit in the Black Sea resort of Sochi in a symbol of Moscow’s efforts to establish itself as a dominant global player on the continent.
The first-ever Russia-Africa summit co-hosted by Egyptian leader Abdul Fattah al-Sisi.The theme of the summit is “For peace, security and development” and Mr Putin emphasised that Russia is not interested in re-partitioning Africa’s wealth, but competing there for “civilised” co-operation.
Mr Putin said relations with Africa had improved, pointing to military cooperation agreements that Russia currently has with more than 30 African countries which it supplies arms to.
Rwanda is among countries that have deepened relations with Russia. The Rwandan cabinet recently gave a green light to an agreement with Russia to advance the use of nuclear energy for “peaceful purposes”, The East African newspaper reports. The technology will be used in the agriculture, energy production and environmental protection, the report says.
It is also widely reported to have deployed mercenaries on the continent, and to conduct covert campaigns there for political influence – two topics that are not on the agenda for the summit, which is due to be held on Wednesday and Thursday.