Russia planning to build nuclear power plant for West African nation of Mali

2023-10-21 20:30:02
Russia planning to build nuclear power plant for West African nation of Mali

Russia has signalled it was interested in building nuclear infrastructure in West African state Mali, after securing an agreement to build a nuclear plant in neighbouring Burkina Faso.

Russian state nuclear operator Rosatom said last week it signed an agreement with Mali to "co-operate in the field of peaceful uses of atomic energy," including potentially building infrastructure there.

The agreement was signed at the Russian Energy Week in Moscow, which was attended by a delegation from Mali and Rosatom deputy director general Nikolay Spassky.

The agreement comes three days after Russian President Vladimir Putin and Malian military ruler Assimi Goita discussed strengthening security ties during a phone call.

Since seizing power in 2020, Mali's ruling junta has brought in Russian planes, helicopters and paramilitaries to strengthen its fight against militants.

Mali had long relied on former colonial power France for military assistance, but has increasingly turned to Russia.

Anti-French sentiment is rampant in Afria’s former French colonies.

Countries in West Africa’s Sahel region have abandoned their hopes in France’s supposed counter-terrorism efforts and started negotiating with armed militants to bring peace to the restive region.

Observers accuse France of pursuing neo-colonialism in Africa, falsely claiming to fight terrorism as a pretext to maintain its influence in the region.

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