Bad timing

Are Cameroon & Russia moving towards a military rapprochement?

By Georges Dougueli, Mathieu Olivier

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Posted on April 20, 2022 14:25

In recent days, Joseph Beti Assomo, Cameroon’s defence minister, made a discreet but remarkable visit to Moscow to sign a new military cooperation agreement between the two countries. This symbolic trip comes at a time when the Kremlin has relaunched its offensive in Ukraine.

On 12 April, Cameroon and Russia signed a new military cooperation agreement. Joseph Beti Assomo, the presidency’s minister delegate in charge of defence, had left Yaounde the day before for Moscow, where he met with his Russian counterpart, Sergei Shoogou. The latter, who is part of Vladimir Putin’s inner circle, initialled the 13-page document on Russia’s behalf.

Although the Cameroonian presidency has not revealed the contents of this agreement, it is similar to the one that the same Russian Federation signed in 2015. At the time, the agreement was concluded with Alexander Fomine, who is in charge of “military-technical” cooperation with foreign armies and Russia’s current deputy defence minister.

Less than a year ago, Colonel-General Fomine signed the new cooperation framework between Russia and Mauritania. He is also in direct contact with his Central African counterpart,

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