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CNN reported on the secret export of gold by Russia from Sudan | News from Germany about world events | DW

“In an attempt to shore up Russia against increasingly harsh Western sanctions and support military action in Ukraine,” Moscow is secretly smudging Sudan’s most valuable resource, gold. Most often, exports are disguised as other goods, such as cookies. This is reported in investigation of the American media company CNN, published on the evening of Friday, July 29.

Former and current US officials told reporters that Russia has actively supported military coup in Sudan 2021, which overthrew the transitional civilian government and consolidated the power of the military. In exchange for Moscow’s support, the current regime allows the free export of gold, bypassing the established rules, depriving “a poor country of hundreds of millions of dollars of public revenues,” the investigation alleges. “We’ve known for a long time that Russia is exploiting Sudan’s natural resources,” a former US official told CNN. Moscow, which has come under heavy sanctions, “benefits relations with Sudanese generals and helping the generals stay in power,” he explained, adding that “this “aid” covers a wide range – from training and intelligence support to jointly benefiting from the stolen gold of Sudan. “.

The role of Prigozhin and PMC Wagner

CNN claims that businessman Eageniy Prigozhin, who was previously called “Putin’s cook” by the Russian media, plays an important role in the cooperation between Moscow and Khartoum. In Sudan, the main tool of the 61-year-old Russian entrepreneur, who is under international sanctions “is Meroe Gold, a subsidiary of Prigozhin’s M-Invest,” the investigation says. Meroe Gold “mines gold and simultaneously provides weapons and training to the country’s army and paramilitaries, according to accounts seen by CNN,” reporters report.

CNN, in collaboration with the Dossier Center, found out that Alexander Kuznetsov, a high-ranking official, controlled operations at key gold mining, processing and transit sites in SudanPMC Wagner, which is also associated with Prigogine. Kuznetsov, also known by the callsigns Ratibor and Radimir, “is a four-time recipient of the Russian Order of Courage and was photographed in 2017 with Putin and Dmitry Utkin, the founder of the Wagner PMC. The EU imposed sanctions against Kuznetsov in 2021,” they indicate journalists.

According to CNN, over the past year and a half, at least 16 planes with gold have been sent from Sudan to Russia. The flights were carried out by “military aircraft, which followed to the Syrian port city of Latakia, where Russia has a large air base.” In addition, there is also a land route by which gold is transported to the Central African Republic, in the Central African Republic, where Wagner PMC “supports a repressive regime”.

The American media company claims that Russian expansion into Sudan began after the annexation of Crimea, and the supply of gold is considered an effective means of circumventing sanctions.

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