Almost 49 million people are facing famine across 43 countries due to the Russian blockade of Ukraine’s Black Sea ports, as reported by Bloomberg. But Russian disinformation operations are hard at work attempting to flip the narrative in Africa, a continent that depends largely on Russian wheat exports, and Ukrainian wheat, corn, sunflower oil, barley and soy exports. Instead, narratives are being deployed blaming the food security crisis on the US- and EU’s invasion-related sanctions on Russia.
However, the EU and US haven’t sanctioned any Russian agricultural products and are instead getting concerned on the traction the narrative is gaining across the continent.
ISD’s executive director for AMEA, Moustafa Ayad, is quoted in the article speaking about the pro-Kremlin tactics targeting countries in West Africa and conspiracy communities in South Africa.
“What we have seen are narratives focused very precisely on how the US is orchestrating this conflict along with NATO in order to starve the globe”, Moustafa said. “Colonialism has to be taken into account with African disinformation. That’s what the Kremlin is counting on: calling out Western states rather than the Kremlin as an imperial force”.