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US trying to disrupt Africa summit – Moscow

Washington wants to persuade countries not to attend an international forum in St. Petersburg in July, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has said

Washington is seeking to sabotage the upcoming summit involving Russia and African countries, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said on Tuesday.

Speaking to the newspaper Argumenty i Fakty, the minister stated that “the US and its vassals are doing everything they can to bring about the international isolation of Russia.” 

“They are trying to torpedo the second Russia-Africa summit that is planned for the end of July in St. Petersburg by persuading our African friends not to participate,” the diplomat added.

The first such gathering was held in 2019 in the Russian Black Sea resort city of Sochi, and was attended by officials from all 54 African countries.

According to Lavrov, “there are less and less of those willing to sacrifice their core interests for the sake of Washington and its lackeys, to carry water for former colonial powers.”

“That is why attempts to hamper our cooperation with the countries of the Global South and the East will continue, but their success is far from guaranteed,” Lavrov said.

Our main difference from the West is that we never lecture foreign partners on how they ought to live. We don’t have a hidden agenda. We don’t employ double standards. We manage interactions between the states on the principles of international law, equality, mutual respect, and the consideration of [another’s] interests. I believe Africans find this constructive approach appealing.

Lavrov said Russia plans to use the July summit in St. Petersburg to discuss the economic development of Africa, including joint projects in infrastructure, mining, the digital sector, and agriculture.

Moscow’s top diplomat visited South Africa, Eswatini, Angola, and Eritrea in January. The following month, he traveled to Mali, Mauritania, and Sudan.

READ MORE: The battle for African hearts and minds: Here’s why the West is upset about Russia’s growing influence on the continent

Some Western officials have warned African nations against dealing with Russia. French President Emmanuel Macron accused Moscow last year of trying to exert influence on the continent by “predatory” means. In August, Linda Thomas-Greenfield, the US envoy to the UN, said African countries “stand the chance of having actions taken against them” if they violate sanctions imposed on Russia. Lavrov, meanwhile, blasted the West’s use of “colonial methods” to pressure African states.

April 04, 2023 at 05:44PM

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