By Festus Poquie
Wagner Group, the mercenary army run by Vladimir Putin’s ally Yevgeny Prigozhin may be accelerating plans for a coup in Liberia, Sierra Leone and the Ivory Coast.
The Russians recruited Melee Kermue, a Liberian to execute the plot in the Mano River Union countries, bring in mercenary spies under the appearance of businesspersons, a former US department of defense official who worked with the Coalition forces in Iraq said.
Wagner’s activities in the region appear coordinated by Melee Kermue, a former U.S. convict whom Sergei Berdnikov, Russia’s ambassador in Ghana, appointed to be Russia’s honorary consul-general in Liberia, Michael Rubin a former Pentagon official said in an article published Wednesday in the Washington Examiner.
“He reportedly allowed Wagner experts to come into the country under the guise of businessmen.
“When Maada Bio was in the United Kingdom last August, anti-government protesters egged on and paid by Wagner instigated an insurrection meant to force his ouster.”
While the Ivory Coast was long one of the most stable countries in West Africa and a regional economic powerhouse, it too is under threat, he said. “The Wagner Group has recruited in the country for its Ukraine fight. And Russian proxies in Mali and Burkina Faso covet the country’s natural resources.”
Wagner has been on the offensive across Africa. the group has sunk roots into the Central Africa Republic and embraced juntas if not masterminded their coups in Mali, Burkina Faso, and Guinea.