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Burkina Faso Summons Ghana Envoy On Latter’s Allegations Over Wagner Forces

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Burkina Faso summoned the Ghanaian ambassador on Friday to give “explanations” about allegations by Ghana’s president over Burkina Faso hiring Russian mercenary group Wagner, said Burkina Faso’s foreign ministry. 

Speaking to journalists along with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Wednesday, Ghana’s President Nana Akufo-Addo accused Burkina Faso of hiring the mercenaries.

During his statement, Akufo-Addo said, “Today, Russian mercenaries are on our northern border. Burkina Faso has now entered into an arrangement to go along with Mali in employing the Wagner forces there,” adding that it was an upsetting development for Ghana.

Akufo-Addo also alleged that Burkina Faso had offered Wagner a mine as payment.

In a statement given after the meeting with the ambassador, Burkina Faso’s foreign ministry stated it had “expressed disapproval” about the allegations made by the Ghanaian president.

In his statement the foreign minister said, “Ghana could have undertaken exchanges with the Burkinabe authorities on the security issue in order to have the right information.”

However, the statement did not accept or even reject the allegations. In an exclusive message to the British news agency Reuters, the foreign ministry spokesperson said, “In any case, Burkina has not called on Wagner”.

The spokesperson also said that Burkina Faso called back its ambassador from Ghana for a meeting. 

Burkinabe authorities have not made it clear whether or not they are collaborating with Wagner, a mercenary group that was called on purpose in neighboring Mali to help fight Islamist militants.

The possibility of Wagner spreading its presence in Africa has raised concerns among Western powers like France and the United States, who claim the group destroys mineral resources and executes human rights abuses in countries where it operates.

Burkina Faso is witnessing an Islamist insurgency in the form of these mercenaries that have their presence in Mali, who, just like the neighbor Burkina Faso, is ruled by a military junta that took over with the promises to strengthen security.

Mali’s decision to hire Wagner forces the previous year distanced it from regional and Western allies and also became the basis for French counter-terrorism forces pulling out.

Wagner forces have also fought in Libya, Central African Republic and Mozambique.

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