MADRID, 21 Nov. (EUROPA PRESS) -
French President Emmanuel Macron has accused Russia of using a "predatory" strategy to fuel anti-French sentiment in Africa, due to the European country's loss of influence on the continent in recent years.
"You only have to look at what is happening in the Central African Republic or elsewhere to see that the Russian project that is being carried out there, while France is on the sidelines, is a project of predation," the president said in statements to TV5 Monde during the 18th Summit of Francophone Countries in Tunis.
Macron has pointed out that the French past is being "used by multiple foreign powers, which try to use their influence" to "harm France, damage its language, sow doubt", but "above all" because they have "certain interests".
"Thanks to social networks and disinformation, a political project financed by Russia and sometimes by others, the French are attacked," said the president.
The French leader has thus responded to accusations that his country is exploiting the historical economic and political ties in its former colonies to serve its own interests.
"This perception is fed by others, it is a political project", the president indicated when pointing out the Russian "complicity" in certain Executives of the African continent.
A former colonial potential with a presence in much of West and Central Africa, France has military ties to French-speaking African countries, while its troops have been present in countries like Mali.
In recent months, Paris has announced the withdrawal of its troops from the Central African Republic or Mali, detailing that the new "road map" of the Central African country will be "finalized within six months."
The Macron Executive has already made it clear on previous occasions that its commitment to the region, including the Gulf of Guinea countries, and to the fight against terrorism in particular, remains. For its part, Mali has hardened its message against Paris following the withdrawal of French troops, going so far as to accuse the French of collaborating with terrorist groups in a harsh letter sent to the UN Security Council.