UGANDAN President Yoweri Museveni said on Tuesday he saw no reason to criticise Russia over the invasion of Ukraine, extolling Russian-African friendship in remarks that will have delighted his visitor, Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov.
Speaking alongside Lavrov, who is on a four-nation African tour seeking support for Moscow at a time of confrontation with Western powers, Museveni praised Russia as a partner in the struggle against colonialism going back a century.
‘If Russia makes mistakes then we tell them,’ Museveni said, citing his participation in student demonstrations against the crushing of the Prague Spring by the Soviet Union in 1968.
‘But when they have not made a mistake we cannot be against them,’ he said.
Many African countries, which import Russian grain and energy while also buying Ukrainian grain and benefitting from Western aid flows and trade ties, have avoided taking sides over the war in Ukraine.
Uganda was among 17 African nations that abstained in a March vote on a United Nations resolution condemning the Russian invasion, which was supported by 141 countries out of 193.