As the continent prepares for the effects of Moscow’s withdrawal from the Ukraine grain export pact, the Russian president will host a conference of African leaders on Thursday in his native Saint Petersburg.
Vladimir Putin continues to have support in a number of African nations despite being isolated on the world stage since beginning a full-scale military campaign in Ukraine.
The fact that our partnership with Africa has advanced to a new level in recent years is significant. In a letter of introduction to summit attendees, Putin stated, “We aim to further expand it.
The Russia-Africa summit, which will take place on Thursday and Friday, is anticipated to bring together seventeen African leaders, including the president of South Africa, Cyril Ramaphosa.
The Kremlin claims that Western nations are attempting to stop African governments from attending the meeting.
The first of its sort was held in Sochi, southern Russia, in 2019, and this summit is the follow-up.
Putin will give a speech in the plenary session in addition to holding bilateral discussions with his colleagues in the background.
According to Kremlin foreign policy advisor Yuri Ushakov, he will talk about his vision for relations between Russia and Africa as well as the “formation of a new world order” in his address.
The main item on the agenda is likely to be the termination of a treaty that permitted Ukrainian grain shipments via the Black Sea to international markets, particularly Africa.
Over the course of a year, the agreement allowed for the export of almost 33 million tonnes of grain from Ukrainian ports, which helped to stabilize world food prices and prevent shortages.
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken urged African summit participants to demand explanations for the delays in the food supply that have driven poorer countries into crisis.
The leaders, according to Blinken, “know exactly who’s to blame for this current situation.”
During a visit to New Zealand on Thursday, he added, “My expectation would be that Russia will hear this clearly from our African partners.”