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LUCIR Lecture: Russia in Africa

Monday 8 May 2023
Anna van Buerenplein
Anna van Buerenplein 301
2595 DG The Hague
room 2.21
Vladimir Putin in Africa

Russia: from a fringe player to a resurgent great power in Africa

This LUCIR lecture will focus on Samuel Ramani’s recently published book Russia in Africa. In this book he challenges Western depictions of Moscow’s post-Cold War Africa policy considers both African and Russian decisionmakers. He recounts how Russia Russia has transformed from a fringe player to a resurgent great power in Africa, three decades after the Soviet Union’s collapse. In doing so, Ramani presents a chronological examination of Russia’s post-Cold War foreign policy towards Africa, and outlines the factors that have enabled and impeded the growth of its influence.

He pays special attention to the non-material factors behind Russia’s rising power; the domestic drivers of Russian decision-making; Moscow’s relationships with fellow external powers; and African perspectives on Russia’s geopolitical role. Samuel Ramani’s analysis cites extensively both Russian-language media and academic sources, and his own interviews with Russian and African elites. His study challenges popular depictions of Russia as an opportunistic anti-Western actor, instead emphasising Moscow’s strategic commitment to Africa and the endurance of historical memory.

Samuel Ramani

About the speaker

Samuel Ramani teaches Politics and International Relations at the University of Oxford. The author of Russia in Africa, published by Hurst, and an associate fellow at the Royal United Services Institute, he contributes regularly to Foreign Policy, The Washington Post, the BBC World Service, Al Jazeera and CNN.

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