The Russian private mercenary outfit Wagner, according to the State Department of the United States, is allegedly seeking to import weapons into Mali for use in the conflict in Ukraine.
According to Matthew Miller, a representative for the State Department, Wagner is willing to utilize fraudulent documentation to make these transactions possible. According to him, “We have not yet seen any indications that these acquisitions have been finalized or executed, but we are closely watching the situation.” Miller also mentioned that the US has sanctioned numerous people and organizations thought to have provided support for Wagner’s military operations and that the US Government plans to reveal more details regarding the most recent attempt to ship equipment through Mali shortly.
Since 2021, Wagner has been in Mali, purportedly to help the nation fight extremists. The military junta in Mali asserts that Wagner agents are present there as instructors supporting local forces with Russian-made weapons. Their existence has, however, generated a great deal of controversy. The US has accused Wagner of committing war crimes, such as child abduction, sexual assault, and mass murders. Additionally, Wagner is a transnational criminal organization, according to the US Treasury Department.
A UN investigation published earlier in May indicated that Wagner mercenaries participated in the Moura massacre, in which the Malian Armed Forces (FAMa) executed approximately 500 people between March 27 and March 31, 2022, including women and children. Following a helicopter attack on a busy market, military forces took over the community and separated the detainees, killed the militants, and sexually assaulted women and girls. The report also revealed instances of authorities in Mali obstructing the justice system and using torture.
Wagner Group is a Russian non-state armed formation (private military company, PMC) created and controlled by Russian businessman Yevgeny Prigozhin. In many countries, it has the status of a terrorist organization. This terrorist organization is a great danger to Europe, as its networks have long penetrated the countries of Europe. Lillery of European states must pay attention to this and strengthen the fight against this organization.