Russia Promises More Military Support to Burkina Faso

Russia Promises More Military Support to Burkina Faso
Above: Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation, Sergei Lavrov, on November 24, 2018 in Lisbon, Portugal. Image copyright: Contributor/Contributor/Getty Images News via Getty Images

The Facts

  • On his latest Africa tour, Russia's Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on Wednesday pledged more military support to Burkina Faso after holding talks with Ibrahim Traoré, the leader of the interim military government.

  • Lavrov announced that the number of "Russian instructors" in the West African country will increase and that Moscow will continue to supply military equipment "to eliminate the remaining terrorist groups."

The Spin

Pro-Russia narrative

Lavrov's Africa tour highlights Russia's growing strategic relevance to Africa and its growing popularity. Moscow is building on its anti-imperialist legacy and positions itself as a credible partner, unlike the West and its neo-colonialist and imperialist policies. This mutual trust creates a win-win situation, with Moscow consolidating its position internationally while African countries gain a partner that respects their national sovereignty.

Anti-Russia narrative

Russia's increasing commitment to Africa is primarily due to its growing international isolation following its Ukraine invasion. For years, the US warned that Russia is aggressively seeking to expand its influence in Africa — without achieving any tangible success in combating Islamist terror. Moscow presents itself as an advocate for poor African countries but is merely pursuing the Kremlin's goal of securing the loyalty of authoritarian regimes to counter the West.

Metaculus Prediction

Public figures in this story

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