Moscow’s increased involvement in Africa could threaten NATO security, London and Madrid claim
Russia’s growing presence on the African continent could make a dent “Worrying” At a joint news conference in Madrid on Wednesday, Spanish Defense Minister Margarita Roebels and British Defense Secretary Ben Wallace described the threat to the southern part of NATO.
African countries such as Libya and Mali have seen increasing activity from the Russian government and the country’s private security agencies, such as the Wagner Group, with two defense chiefs claiming that such developments “Very clean” And Moscow could use it as a leverage against Europe or NATO.
Rabbels and Wallace have linked Russia’s activities to the growing threat of organized crime and terrorism in the region, saying that combined with the growing instability and hunger in Africa, such developments could pose a serious threat to Europe.
“If [Russia] At one end of Europe, immigrants can use the flow as a weapon, at the other end, of course. Wallace said. The UK defense secretary was referring to Europe as a crisis on the Polish border with Belarus, where thousands of migrants from third countries, mostly from the Middle East, are trying to cross into the European Union.
Western nations have previously accused Belarusian leader Alexander Lukashenko of inciting the crisis by encouraging migrants to move to Europe. The Kremlin has also been accused of backing Minsk in the effort. Both Russia and Belarus have denied any wrongdoing.
Now, Spanish and British defense chiefs fear that Moscow could also become a threat to the security of the military bloc south. “NATO cannot be indifferent in this situation,” he said. Robles said when Wallace suggested the alliance “The whole of NATO needs to be involved in the strategic concept, all the regions it covers through its partnership.”
The British defense secretary assumed that Russian President Vladimir Putin could too “Use his navy as a way to intimidate his enemies and that means he will be in other parts, including the South Flank.” He added that NATO should deal with the Russian navy “One more threat” Than the ground forces in Moscow, which, according to Wallace, “Already tired” In Ukraine.
At the same time, Wallace called on Moscow “Do the right thing” And open the Black Sea port of Ukraine for grain exports. “That grain is for everyone, Libya, Yemen, people around the world are relying on that grain to feed themselves.” Wallace said.
Western nations have accused Russia of blocking Ukrainian ports. However, according to Moscow, it is the sanctions imposed by the West that are hindering free trade, including trade in agricultural products.
The meeting between the Spanish and UK defense chiefs took place in late June ahead of the NATO summit in Madrid. Earlier this month, the Baltic states demanded the formation of a huge NATO force in the east. Finland and Sweden have also formally expressed their desire to join the military alliance.