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Russia re-enters Indian Ocean with Africa as springboard

File photo of Russian President Vladimir Putin

While the international attention remains focused on Chinese Maritime Silk Road projects in the Indian Ocean, Russia has been silently positioning itself in the Horn of Africa. Last year in December, Moscow signed an Agreement with the Sudanese government to set up a military-naval facility at Port Sudan.

TASS, the Russian state media outlet noted that the Agreement “meets the goals of maintaining peace and stability in the region, is defensive and is not aimed against other countries” and the facility “can be used for carrying out repairs and replenishing supplies and for the crewmembers of Russian naval ships to have a rest.” Accordingly, it has been designated as ‘material-technical support facility’ and could accommodate up to 300 Russian military and civilian personnel and host up to four warships, including nuclear-powered vessels.