Why Russia is cheering on the Burkina Faso coup

The latest coup in Burkina Faso saw young people waving Russian flags in the streets of the capital, Ouagadougou – something that must have warmed hearts in the Kremlin.

Although fairly small in number, it has prompted speculation that there may have been some Russian involvement in the events that saw Captain Ibrahim Traoré seize power in a nation beset by growing jihadist violence.

Yevgeny Prigozhin, an oligarch close to Russian President Vladimir Putin and the founder of the Wagner Group – a shadowy mercenary organisation active in several African countries – congratulated the young junta leader, describing him as “a truly worthy and courageous son of his motherland”.

“The people of Burkina Faso were under the yoke of the colonialists, who robbed the people as well as played their vile games, trained, supported gangs of bandits and caused much grief to the local population.”

Here he is referring to former colonial power France – and those welcoming the coup in the West African…

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This article was written by and originally published on www.bbc.co.uk