French President Emmanuel Macron delivers a speech ahead of his visit to Central Africa, at the Elysee Palace in Paris, Feb. 27, 2023. (Photo: AP)

French President Emmanuel Macron heads to central Africa Wednesday on a four-nation visit marked by what he said ahead of his planned Wednesday departure.

n Monday, he announced a revamped relationship with Africa, amid an increase in anti-French sentiment in some places— and rising Russian and Chinese influence.

“Partnership,” “humility,” and “reorganization” are part of Macron’s lexicon this week, with his new, recalibrated strategy for Africa.

He said French military bases in Africa would be reorganized — with some becoming military academies or run in collaboration with African and European partners — based on goals defined by African hosts.

He said France will conduct more training, supply more equipment and work more closely with local troops, according to their needs.

Macron also said France must show a “profound humility” and carve out a “new balanced and mutual responsible relationship” with African nations.

Macron’s revamped Africa strategy will be put to the test this week, as he heads first to Gabon on Wednesday for a summit on forests. He then goes on to visit Angola, the Republic of Congo and the neighboring Democratic Republic of Congo. Only two countries on his list — Gabon and the Republic of Congo — are former French colonies.

His Africa visit follows key setbacks for France, especially in the Sahel region, as a partnership to fight an Islamist insurgency unravels. France has ended military operations in Mali and Burkina Faso, amid deteriorating relationships with the military power-holders, and rising anti-French sentiment.

Paris is also feeling pressure from other foreign powers on the continent. That includes the private Russian military group Wagner, present in places like Mali and the Central African Republic, where it is accused of committing human rights violations.

Macron derided Wagner as a so-called “life insurance policy for failed regimes and putschists.” His government accuses Russia of spreading anti-French disinformation.

“The past 10-15 years, every French president comes to power with the idea of sort of reforming the relationship with Africa — moving beyond the old legacy of post-colonial relations,” said Martin Quencez, the Paris office director for the German Marshall Fund. He spoke to VOA before Macron’s speech. He said every recent reset effort has failed.

Source: VOA

Rwanda President Paul Kagame | Stop Disrespecting Africans

  • Video
  • Latest News
  • Spotlight
  • Opinion
  • Telling the African Story: Komla Dumor.
  • Africa Straight Up - Official Film.
  • Ethiopian Ancient Architecture and its History.
  • Aliens Visit to Ethiopia Sacred Places.
  • My Love & Pride - The Other Side of Africa.