THE RUSSO-MALIAN COOPERATION: A WIN OR LOSS FOR FRANCE?
Keywords:Russo-Malian, France, Russia, Terrorists, Communist, Mali
The Republic of Mali is a country of the African continent. The country is situated in a landlocked region in West Africa with Bamako as its capital city. It is worthy to note that the contemporary Mali was an integral part of the then great West African empires. These empires namely; the Ghana Empire, the Mali Empire and the Songhai Empire controlled the trans-Saharan trade. Mali has for a long time been under the control of France, especially with the events of the late 19th century scramble for and partitioning of Africa among some European powers. Over the years, there have been varying debates on the presence of France in Mali as compared with other great powers. Although Russia tried to move in the direction of Mali during the era of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR), contemporary Russian Federation has been somehow distanced from Mali until Vladimir Putin assumed the leadership role of Russia. Thus, this paper is carried out to dissect the Pacts between Moscow and Bamako and the implications on France interest. Cultural Theory of International Relations was used. The study relied on interpretive design. Primary and secondary data were collected. Data were subjected to content analysis. It is uncovered that Moscow challenged Paris, whose dominance is fast depreciating in Mali. Mali and France enjoyed mutual relationship until the closure of 5000 Berkane mission in Kidal, northern Mali over alleged sympathy for terrorists and economic sabotage. Putin’s Russia therefore capitalized on Mali’s face off with France.
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