These states have switched to Russia’s side

A year ago only four countries voted together with Russia, now there are six. What has changed.

It is a clear signal that the international community has sent against Russia and its President Vladimir Putin: the UN General Assembly passed a resolution with a large majority calling for a peace solution and a Russian troop withdrawal. However, seven states voted against, 32 abstained – and ten stayed away from the vote.

On the one hand, the result is also a success for Germany, which introduced the resolution among others. But the number of states on Russia’s side has increased compared to a year ago: at the beginning of March 2022, only four countries voted together with Russia against condemning the war, now there are six.

Newcomers are Nicaragua and Mali, who abstained a year ago. An overview:

Military junta realigns Mali

Mali has undergone a political U-turn in recent years. The military junta seized power in 2021, and since then relations with western countries have deteriorated significantly. French troops in particular have been in the country since 2013 to support the Malian army in its fight against Islamist groups. A year ago, after considerable diplomatic upheaval, France announced its withdrawal. Here you can read more about it. The Bundeswehr also wants to withdraw from the country by May 2024.

Instead, the government in Bamako is now working with Russia. The “Wagner” mercenary group is now fighting alongside the Malian troops, and the two countries want to expand their strategic cooperation. It was only at the beginning of February that the Malian government received the Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov in Bamako for this purpose. Read here what effects this could have on the security of the EU.

With Russia out of isolation

Russia was also able to expand its influence in Nicaragua. Both countries have concluded several cooperation agreements in recent months. In June, the Nicaraguan government issued a decree allowing Russia to send troops to the state near the United States.

President Daniel Ortega is considered particularly close to Russia. “Russia is simply defending itself,” he said a year ago, according to a report by Der Spiegel. Nevertheless, he abstained at the time, but voted together with Russia in a resolution on the Ukraine war in October 2022.

Russia is a particularly important partner for Nicaragua. Because internationally the state is increasingly isolated, as the deputy director of the Stiftung Wissenschaft und Politik (SWP), Günther Maihold, told the editorial network Germany. Among other things, because Ortega brutally suppressed mass protests in 2018 and brutally suppressed his critics.

Russian-Nicaraguan cooperation has a long tradition. During Ortega’s first term of office from 1985 to 1990, the Soviet Union had supported the country economically, technically and militarily. In 2014, Nicaragua was among the states that recognized the Ukrainian peninsula of Crimea as part of Russia.

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