Russia remains a major arms exporter to Africa

Africa Sustainable Conservation News

Think Africa Press

As Russia maintains its status as the world’s second largest exporter of arms, it looks increasingly to Africa.
An Ethiopian Suri warrior with a Russian-made Kalashnikov. Photo by Dietmar Temps.         

At the start of April, the UN General Assembly overwhelmingly approved a new arms trade treaty. The treaty had been nearly 20 years in the making and seeks to regulate the $70 billion international trade in conventional arms. Despite the recalcitrance of North Korea, Iran and Syria – the only three countries who voted against it – the treaty was widely supported, garnering the approval of 154 of the 193 nations in attendance. 23 countries abstained.

Notably, many African countries were the most strongly supportive of an arms trade treaty while amongst the abstentions was Russia, the world’s second biggest arms exporter after the US and a highly significant arms partner with much of Africa. What…

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