- Russian involvement in Africa dates back to the Cold War, and the Putin regime is currently focused on renewing relations.
- International sanctions and the drop in the oil price are major drivers of Russian involvement.
- Russian involvement in both Zimbabwe and Mozambique is strongly focused on the extractives sector.
- The arms trade is also a key sector for Russia in Africa.
- In both Zimbabwe and Mozambique the engagement has been driven by elites, and is frequently characterised by high levels of opacity and possible corruption.
- Russia has also been a factor in both countries’ elections, with election monitors linked to the Russian government providing a gloss of approval to highly problematic election practices.