Russia Strengthened economic and political relations with the United States in recent weeks Libya AlgeriaThese two countries have maintained close bilateral relations for decades, and now it sees these two countries as a springboard for its expansion strategy in the north. Africa and the Sahel, A key region for the future of the European Union.
As far as Libya is concerned, Russia firmly occupies a dominant position in the east, and Russia has been cooperating with the region since 2015. The controversial Marshal Khalifa Haft, The parliamentary guard of the eastern city of Tobruk, became a strong man in the country because he controlled most of the oil resources.
Haft, former member Military leadership Muammar GaddafiRecruited by the CIA in the 1980s to become the main opponent of exile, once implied Will participate in the presidential election It was scheduled to be held in December this year, and it was opposed by the group of controlled Tripoli and Misrata city-states.
Since 2017, the marshal has received support from a number of private military security companies (PSMC), especially the well-known Wagner Group, which has worked in the conflicts between Ukraine and Syria and expanded to other African countries, and Owned by the oligarch Yevgeny Prigozin, One of the president’s young friends, Vladimir Putin.
The departure of Russian mercenaries and other lucky soldiers from Sudan, Syria, Arabia, Chad, Europe and even North America is one of the crux of threats to the ceasefire agreement negotiated between Ankara and Ankara a year ago. Moscow The process of acting Political transition initiated by the United Nations, Which should lead to year-end elections.
In this context, senior Kremlin officials and Libyan Oil and Gas Minister Mohamed AounThis is a sector that Moscow is increasingly interested in and already has important commercial interests, and is related to the renewal and protection of local industries.
According to local media reports, during the meeting organized to restore the Libya-Russia joint committee, participants agreed to develop plans to increase the scale of bilateral trade, investment, and technological cooperation.
In addition to strengthening the projects already underway, such as the project initiated by the Russian Tatneft company, the company resumed drilling operations in early October in cooperation with the appraisal well in Ghadames in northwestern Libya. Libyan National Petroleum Corporation (NOC).
Tafnett suspended operations in February 2011, which was the date when the revolution began, which will end at the end of the same year Gaddafi’s dictatorship Due to the push of different militias and NATO military support.
“Russia’s interest has changed in the past two years. Previously, it considered Libya to be a simple platform to settle in NATO’s backyard and a springboard to compete with China for raw materials,” a Libyan diplomat told Effie.
“But now they understand that this is also a country with a lot of economic resources, and their companies can also use it, not so much to enrich themselves, as to prevent European or North American companies from entering,” a European colleague added to Efe , For security reasons, no one likes it better. Not sure.
Haft and Russia are the two most resisting foreign mercenaries in Libya, and the United Nations has also called for the same.
Algeria, the gateway to the Sahel
Similarly, in recent weeks, Russia has intensified its contacts with Algeria. Algeria has the longest and most unstable border in the Sahel. The Sahel is a place where the EU has important geostrategic interests.
There was a report a few days ago A hypothetical secret agreement The entry of Wagner Group units is said to be aimed at positioning itself on the edge of Mali and Niger. The two governments have neither confirmed nor resolutely denied the agreement.
This week, senior officials from the two countries spoke on the phone Western Sahara Within the framework of the official visit of the Polisario Front to Moscow, after the appointment of a new UN envoy was lifted, the coordination of policies in the region has been hindered by Morocco in the past two years.
“Russia has always been on the side of Algeria, Just like Morocco has been counting on the United States and Europe. Now that the Algerians have severed ties with their neighbors, Russia also understands that there is a better chance of placing their pieces in a very sensitive area of Europe. This is a win-win relationship,” a European military source in the region concluded.