The Blood Gold Report will explore the extent to which Africa’s gold trade is funding Russian violence.
International researchers and human rights activists have established a joint investigation into the role western mining companies play in funding violence in Africa’s gold trade.
The Blood Gold Report research programme will explore deals between western mining companies, authoritarian African governments and Russian mercenaries including the paramilitary organisation, the Wagner Group. The research will initially focus on Mali, a resource-rich nation where the ruling junta is currently propped up by Russian mercenaries.
“Mali stands out for a number of reasons,” David Clement, researcher for 21 Democracy and the Blood Gold Report, told Mining Technology. “It has turned away from democracy, and its military government is supported by the Wagner Group.
They have driven out the UN peacekeeping mission, and they have been found to have committed atrocities – and still a number of major western mining companies continue to operate there.” Following the Wagner Group’s attempted rebellion against the Russian Kremlin this June, the extent of its involvement in Africa’s metal trade has been under scrutiny.
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