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US scheme to sow discord between Russia, African states failed, ambassador says

Anatoly Antonov expressed confidence that "Washington's slogans about a new 21st century partnership are really a wolf in sheep's clothing"

WASHINGTON, December 23. /TASS/. Washington’s plot to pit African countries against Russia has obviously failed, Russian Ambassador to the United States Anatoly Antonov said in an interview with TASS.

"Have the Americans managed to pit African states against us? We are firmly convinced that this scheme has failed. And as before, we feel the support and desire of our African friends to foster cooperation. This fact was also clearly confirmed during the vote on anti-Russian resolutions at the UN General Assembly and during our contacts with partners, including in Washington D.C.," Antonov said.

As the diplomat stressed, one of US goals in regard to Africa is to "counteract the rising influence" of Russia on the continent. "This stems from the US strategy on Sub-Saharan Africa," the Russian envoy said. According to him, the Washington administration remained committed to this line at the US-Africa summit held in the US capital in mid-December.

"Although the Americans stated that geopolitical standoff was not on the agenda of the event, but as the saying goes, you cannot hide a cat in a bag. The fact that the key goal of the US in this part of the world is to drive Russia and China out is confirmed by the statements made by US officials as well as final documents adopted at the meeting: "Joint Statement by the African Union and the United States on Food Security," as well as "Vision Statement for the US-Africa Partnership." The anti-Russian and anti-Chinese undertone is seen in both documents," Antonov explained, saying that it’s noteworthy that "the content and even the mere fact of drafting the above mentioned documents had been kept in secret before the publication not only from the public, but also from the summit’s participants themselves." "In our view, this once again confirms that the administration is conducting dirty policy against African states," the ambassador said.

Antonov expressed confidence that "Washington's slogans about a new 21st century partnership are really a wolf in sheep's clothing." "The previous and in fact neocolonial line of behavior was covered by assurances of friendship. Take note of this: the White House has not used the term "mutually beneficial cooperation." Obviously, here they presume that the US is the one who should derive benefits," Antonov said.

Summits in Russia and the US

The US-Africa Leaders Summit was held in Washington D.C. on December 13-15. Nearly 50 countries of the African continent took part in the event. Five states were not invited for the summit. The US explained the refusal to invite Burkina Faso, Guinea, Mali and Sudan by the coups d’etat there and that the African Union does not recognize the authorities who assumed power. The White House also explained that Washington does not have full-fledged diplomatic relations with Eritrea.

In summer 2023 St. Petersburg will host the second Russia-Africa summit. The first Russia-Africa summit and economic forum took place on October 22-24, 2019 in Sochi. The event's motto was "For Peace, Security and Development".