Analysts Say Africa Won't Give Ukraine What It's Asking For

Halima Athumani for Voice of America reports that analysts say the African Union (AU) is unlikely to offer Ukraine much support against Russia despite a passionate address by Ukraine's president. Many African nations have historical ties to Russia and have refused to condemn its invasion of Ukraine.

In his speech to the African Union, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy accused Russia of holding Africa hostage by not allowing Ukrainian grain exports to reach the continent unless Western sanctions are lifted.

Zelenskyy, speaking via videolink, also reminded AU leaders about Africa's history of being colonized and said the continent should never support any attempt by one nation to colonize another.

Abdi Rashid, chief Horn of Africa analyst for Sahan Research, a Nairobi-based research group, said that while many Africans have expressed support toward Russia because of the former Soviet Union's backing of liberation movements against colonial powers and apartheid, Russia has changed.

Even though African countries are struggling with high inflation and the effects of drought and lack of Ukrainian imports, China has made it clear it will provide support to the continent only if Africa pushes back against what Beijing calls Western interference in the war, especially the sanctions aimed at the government of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

InFocus

Left to right, Russia's Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, Russia's President Vladimir Putin, Russian Presidential Yuri Ushakov, Russia’s Energy Minister Alexander Novak and President of Central African Republic Faustin Archange Touadéra, third right, during Russia-Central African Republic talks on the sidelines of the 2019 Russia-Africa Summit at the Sirius Park of Science and Art in Sochi, Russia (file photo).

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