“Wagnerites” work in Sudan, Libya, Central African Republic, Mozambique and other states. The status of terrorists can undermine US relations with African countries, the White House is sure.
Congress and the administration of US President Joe Biden are debating whether to recognize the Russian PMC Wagner as a foreign terrorist organization (FTO status). The American edition of The Hill writes about this, citing an assistant to one of the congressmen.
The White House has already imposed sanctions against Russian mercenaries fighting in Ukraine. Lawmakers are now pushing the State Department to take decisive action to give Wagner FTO status.
This status imposes significantly more costs on the group and increases US resources to pursue the “Wagnerites”. This would be a powerful deterrent against people or governments doing business with the group, lawmakers say.
“This is a game-changer,” said one of the bill’s co-sponsors, Senator Lindsey Graham.
The work of PMC “Wagner” in African countries
An aide to the congressman, in an anonymous conversation with The Hill, noted that the Biden administration opposes the law because of fears of undermining US relations with African countries.
PMC “Wagner” operates in Sudan, Libya, the Central African Republic, Mozambique, Mali, Burkina Faso, Cameroon and Chad. Private security companies help the weak armed forces of these countries.
PMC “Wagner” operates in Sudan, Libya, Central African Republic and other African states
“If PMC Wagner receives the status of a terrorist, the governments of African countries will be under sanctions – they will be banned from traveling to the United States, and their assets will be blocked,” he said.
Supporters of the FTO status say Wagner meets the criteria for a terrorist organization because of its ties to the Kremlin.
Former Finance Ministry sanctions official Justyna Gudzowska said the Wagner PMC was spending money in the CAR on “sophisticated Hollywood-style propaganda glorifying Russia.”
“The group exists not only for economic extraction, but also to demonstrate Russian power abroad,” she told lawmakers.
Giving Wagner FTO status will deal a blow to humanitarian groups
Giving Wagner FTO status would be a blow to humanitarian groups working in those countries, she said.
Supporters of the FTO status hope that the initiative of the Congress will serve as the basis for declaring Russia a sponsor of terrorism. The Biden administration resisted this step, fearing a response, in particular, the difficulty in exporting grain from Ukraine, the publication concludes.
Recall that on March 13, British intelligence noted the need to reduce the scale of military operations or their intensity in Ukraine. The reason for this is the deprivation of access to the recruitment of prisoners.
On March 11, Ukrainian border guards liquidated a group of “Wagnerites” in the Bakhmut industrial zone. Snipers destroyed 6 Russian mercenaries.
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