Russia foreign minister Lavrov showed Moscow’s diplomatic clout in Africa

2022-07-31 11:03:15
Russia foreign minister Lavrov showed Moscow’s diplomatic clout in Africa

While the West has tried to isolate Russia in for its conflict with Ukraine, Foreign Minister

Sergei Lavrov

received red carpet treatment during his four-nation tour of Africa.

Russia’s top diplomat visited Egypt, Ethiopia, Uganda and the Republic of Congo.

“Lavrov's visit showed that Russia still had the diplomatic muscle to challenge the West for the hearts and minds of African governments,” the BBC said in a report,

In Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, Lavrov said that African countries are trying to define their own futures and solve their own problems, a trend he said is opposed by the West in its pursuit of US hegemony.

At a press conference with Lavrov, Uganda's President Yoweri Museveni extolled Russian-African friendship.

Russia’s top diplomat praised what he described as "the responsible and balanced position taken by Uganda and other African states", saying the West is displaying a colonial mindset by demanding that Africa adopt an anti-Russian stance.

Harking back to the Cold War, Museveni, who has been in power for 36 years, said that when asked if he was pro-West or pro-East he rejected the question as idiotic.

"I am pro-myself. And I deal with other people according to how they relate with my own interest," he said.

From Libya to Nigeria, Ethiopia to Mali, Moscow has been building key strategic military alliances and an increasingly favorable public profile across Africa in recent years.

The Western stance on the Russia-Ukraine war has gained limited traction in Africa, where governments are receptive to non-Western alternatives, said H.A. Hellyer of the Royal United Services Institute, a UK think tank.


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