Sun. Jun 16th, 2024

Putin’s troops and US military stationed at same airbase as tensions over Ukraine explode

Tyler Mitchell By Tyler Mitchell Jun4,2024

Russian and American troops have been using the same military base for weeks as tensions between Washington and Moscow skyrocket amid the Ukraine war.

Vladimir Putin’s men are reportedly using the Air Base 101 alongside US soldiers in Niger, a US defense official and another source familiar told CNN earlier this week.

Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin confirmed reports but stressed that the Russians are in a separate air hanger in the African military site.

He told reporters: [The situation] is not great but, in the short-term, manageable.

“Airbase 101 where our forces [are], is a Nigerien air force base that is co-located with an international airport in the capital city.

“The Russians are in a separate compound and don’t have access to US forces or access to our equipment.”

The move still puts Russian and American troops extremely close to one another at a time of severely hostile relations between the two powers.

Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov said Russia has been “developing ties with various African countries in all areas, including in the military one.”

He added that those countries “are interested in it, we are also interested in it, and we will continue to develop our relations with African states.”

And as Russia strikes closer ties with Niger’s military rulers, the African nation’s relations with the US have soured following a military coup last July.

In March, it urged the White House to pull 1,000 soldiers stationed there out of the country.

Niger had been a core ally in the battle against terror group ISIL (ISIS) and al-Qaeda associates in the Sahel before the coup soured relations.

Now, a surge of extremist violence has been sweeping across the region.

It comes after the terrifying organisation of Russian mercenaries previously known as the Wagner Group offered military training and support to a range of countries in the region.

Washington has previously lashed out at Russia’s “illicit and destabilizing activities in Africa”, issuing a round of sanctions on the Wagner Group back in March.

Brian Nelson, US Treasury Under Secretary for terrorism and financial intelligence, said at the time that the US was targeting those that “sought monetary gain from illicit natural resource extraction.”

But the Wagner Group is not the same entity it once was following the suspicious death of its leader Yevgeney Prigozhin following an attempt to oust Russia’s military leadership, enraging Putin.

The US and its allies have issued sanctions on thousands of targets since Russia first invaded Ukraine two years ago.

Tyler Mitchell

By Tyler Mitchell

Tyler is a renowned journalist with years of experience covering a wide range of topics including politics, entertainment, and technology. His insightful analysis and compelling storytelling have made him a trusted source for breaking news and expert commentary.

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One thought on “Putin’s troops and US military stationed at same airbase as tensions over Ukraine explode”
  1. It’s alarming that Russian and American troops are sharing the same military base amidst escalating tensions over Ukraine. The proximity of these forces raises concerns about potential conflicts. Let’s hope diplomatic efforts can prevent any dangerous confrontations.

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