Russian Wagner Group Deploys Troops for Presidential Security in Central African Republic


Dozens of Russian Wagner private military company troops have been deployed to the Central African Republic (CAR) to provide security during the upcoming constitutional referendum on July 30, according to an official statement released by the presidency on Monday.

President Faustin-Archange Touadera of Central African Republic. Image from PUBLIC DOMAIN

The arrival of the Wagner troops follows a recent but short-lived mutiny led by the group’s founder, Yevgeny Prigozhin, in Russia. This development raised questions about the future of Wagner’s military and commercial operations across various countries, including CAR. The government clarified that the troop movement was part of a regular rotation rather than a withdrawal, addressing previous speculations.

Albert Yaloke Mokpem, a spokesperson, explained that the newly arrived troops are part of the standard rotation process, providing logistical and administrative support at different levels. Their primary objective is to ensure the security of the constitutional referendum. However, the spokesperson did not disclose the exact number of troops involved in the deployment.

Photographs circulating on social media confirm the presence of dozens of individuals on the tarmac, aligning with the spokesperson’s acknowledgment of the arrival of the Wagner mercenaries.A senior military official in CAR’s capital confirmed that hundreds of troops have indeed arrived.

CAR, with a population of approximately 5.5 million, has struggled to achieve stability since gaining independence in 1960. The situation worsened in 2013 when a rebellion ousted then-President Francois Bozize, resulting in renewed conflicts among various armed groups controlling significant portions of the territory.

In response to the rebel groups, CAR President Faustin-Archange Touadera, who was elected in 2016 and reelected in 2020, sought assistance from Russia. Touadera is currently campaigning for the constitutional referendum, which, if passed, could remove the two-term presidential limit and potentially enable him to run for office again.

Russia initially deployed security contractors to CAR in 2018 and later increased its support, sending over 1,500 troops, including instructors and soldiers fighting alongside the country’s own army.

Some of these troops are part of President Touadera’s security detail and are frequently seen accompanying him.CAR continues to rely on external support to address the prevailing instability, highlighting the close relationship between the country and Russia.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *