The nations of the continent are counting on Moscow's support, the head of the Russia-Africa Partnership Forum told Newsweek
The West's attempts to pressure Africa to turn on Russia have failed as people on the continent realize the true nature of the conflict in Ukraine and see that the unipolar world order is coming to an end, according to the head of the Russia-Africa Partnership Forum.
Oleg Ozerov, who is also Russia's ambassador-at-large, told Newsweek on Friday that the attendance of 40 out of 54 nations of the continent at the Russia-Africa Interparliamentary Conference had "shattered the myth of Russia's alleged isolation due to the events in Ukraine, persistently promoted in the West."
"People in Africa understand very well that the former Soviet republic has turned into an arena of confrontation between the new and the old world paradigms, between different visions of the future, not just a trivial feud between neighbors," he said.
According to the diplomat, the well-balanced and neutral approach towards "Russia's confrontation with the West" by Africa, China, India and Latin American nations "confirms once again that the transition to... multipolar architecture is irreversible." Those countries clearly understand that the time for "unipolar world-order is running out," he added.
What Africa needs now is promotion of local solutions and national interests, as well as deliverance "from the rigid constraints of globalism promoted by neo-liberalist ideologists," Ozerov said. "African countries count on Russia's support" in achieving those goals, he stated.
Moscow is backing efforts to complete the decolonization process in a number of African countries, while also working to put together a broad anti-terrorist front on the continent "free from any hidden agenda or double standards," the diplomat continued.
"The US and EU want Africa to play the role of a mere supplier of raw materials to the 'civilized world,'" Ozerov said. But Russia has a different approach as its "primary interest is to assist the development of Africa's domestic energy and electricity markets, where we have considerable expertise, especially as regards nuclear energy," he explained.
Moscow has "no vested interests, such as to preserve its zone of influence or aggressively guard markets from any 'outsiders,'" and Africans see that, the envoy said. And that's the reason why "the unprecedented pressure by the West on Russia's partners in Africa is not that effective in practice."
Ozerov said that, during his trips to the continent, it became obvious to him that "the aggressive imposition of Western 'new values' causes growing rejection there and only brings Russia and African countries closer together."
Russia is due to host a high-level Russia-Africa Summit in St. Petersburg in July, with the envoy saying that recent developments indicate that the event is going to be "a success."