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Russia - Africa Relations in the 21st Century: Symbiotic or Predatory?

January 24, 2022


Africa, a promising continent with political clout, is a strategic region that has caught the attention of foreign powers over the years. Notable among these foreign powers is the Russian Federation, the successor state of the defunct Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR). Following the dissolution of the USSR in 1991, Russia-Africa relations receded owing to the dwindling economy of Russia, not forgetting that Africa was no longer considered a strategic region to Russia. Today, Russia with a rekindled interest in Africa is pursuing among other things, economic, military, and diplomatic relations with African countries. Much as this is a welcome development in the African continent, the multifaceted relations between Moscow and the capital of many African states have been labelled by some in the West as ‘predatory’. The objective of this study is to ascertain if RussoAfrican relations in the 21st century have been symbiotic or predatory. The paper adopts the historical approach, and data were garnered from secondary sources. Theoretically, Constructivism was employed to throw light on Russia-Africa relationship since the 2000s. The paper concludes that though unpleasant instances are conspicuous in their multifaceted relations, it can safely be said that Russo-African relations in the new millennium have to a great extent been mutually beneficial