After starting a four-nation visit of the continent, French President Emmanuel Macron reaffirmed on Thursday that France has no wish to resume its previous practices of meddling in Africa.
Speaking to the French community in Gabon, Macron remarked, “The age of Francafrique is fully ended,” alluding to France’s post-colonization policy of backing authoritarian regimes to further its interests.
At a time when France is forced to withdraw its troops because to a wave of antagonism among unstable former colonies in the Sahel, Macron is traveling to four countries in central Africa.
Prior to his arrival, Macron on Monday provided some information regarding the realignment of French military following their withdrawal from Burkina Faso last month, Mali, and the Central African Republic in 2022.
He declared that “in the following months” there would be a “noticeable reduction” in the number of French troops stationed in Africa, with a greater emphasis placed on preparing and supplying the forces of allies.
Macron emphasized that the reorganization was “neither a withdrawal nor a disengagement but adjusting an arrangement” with friends in his remarks in Libreville.
Macron landed in Gabon, a staunch ally of France, late on Wednesday for a meeting on tropical forest preservation. He and Gabonese President Ali Bongo Ondimba revealed this plan at the UN climate conference last year.
He travels to Angola on Friday before taking a flight to the Republic of Congo and the neighboring Democratic Republic of the Congo after attending the conference’s summit on Thursday.