Macron slams African leaders' "hypocrisy" about the Ukraine conflict


Away from the battelfield now, French President Emmanuel Macron has hit out at "the hypocrisy [of some countries], particularly on the African continent" over failing to condemn Russia for its invasion of Ukraine.

Speaking on a tour of West and Central Africa at the same time as Russia's Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov was on a diplomatic tour of another part of the continent, Macron branded Russia "one of the last imperial colonial powers" for its attack on its neighbour.

"Russia launched an offensive against Ukraine. It's a territorial war, the likes of which we thought had disappeared from European soil. It's a war from the early 20th, even the 19th century," Macron said at a press conference in Benin.

He also accused Russia of spreading disinformation and using energy and food as tools in a "new type of hybrid world war".

And in Cameroon, standing next to the country's president, Paul Biya, Macron said that African leaders had too often failed "to call a war a war, and say who started it", according to the New York Times.

Many African countries have held back from outright criticism of Russia's aggression in Ukraine and kept a neutral position on the conflict.

In March, 17 African countries abstained in a UN vote to condemn the invasion.


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