Sahel Security 2023: Russia Forecast

Russia will continue to expand its influence throughout the Sahel in 2023, offering an attractive alternative partner for African nations fed up with their ex-colonial masters. Because of Russia’s isolation resulting from the Ukraine war, they will continue to look for alliances abroad. The failure of Western counterterrorism campaigns to fully deal with the issue in the Sahel has spurred the neighbouring nations to loom for new partnerships. Moreover, Russian policy in the region is driven by Private Military Contractors (PMCs) such as the Wagner group, which will not change with the Russian military occupying Ukraine.

Key Judgement 1: It is highly likely that Russia will continue to improve its relations with nations in the Sahel region to counter becoming increasingly isolated as a result of the Ukraine war in the next 12 months.

Key Judgement 2: It is highly likely that the increase in terrorist activities in the Sahel alongside Western failures to combat it will cause nations located there to request Russian assistance in the next 12 months.

Key Judgement 3: It is highly likely that Russian Policy in the Sahel will increasingly rely on Private Military Contractors (PMCs) in the next 12 months.

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