In order to stop China and Russia from becoming more powerful in the area, French President Emmanuel Macron will start a tour of the countries of central Africa the week after next. He will visit four of these countries during this tour. A summit on the environment is scheduled to take place in Gabon, which will be followed by visits to Angola, the Republic of Congo, and ultimately the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
His trips happen at a time when people in Paris are getting more worried about the growing role that Russia is playing in French-speaking African countries, as well as the fact that China has been trying to get more power for a while now. France and its Western allies say that the Russian mercenary group Wagner was working in Mali and the Central African Republic. They say that this is why France had to pull its troops out of both countries where they were fighting jihadists.
Paris has also said that Moscow spreads false information to hurt French interests in countries that used to be French colonial possessions. A French presidential official who didn’t want to be named said that Emmanuel Macron will go to Gabon on March 1 to take part in the One Forest Summit. The summit will focus on saving the forests along the large Congo River basin. After that, he will go to Angola as part of a plan to improve relations between France and the parts of Africa where Portuguese is spoken.
On March 3 and 4, he will wrap up his journey in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, which is located in close proximity to the Republic of the Congo. Macron has maintained that Africa is a priority during his second mandate as the leader of France, and he traveled to Cameroon, Benin, and Guinea-Bissau in July of last year as part of that mandate.
To the dismay of Western powers, a number of African powers have not taken a stand on the Russian offensive in the same way as other countries, like India and China, in order to stay neutral and protect their own interests. This has caused the West to become increasingly frustrated.