The Sahel is at a significant turning-point. The region’s evolving security situation has been marked by the military coups across the region and the French announcement to reshape Barkhane. Of particular note is the recent news from Mali that the Russian parastatal, Wagner Group, has provided private military contractors to augment local forces in the region. In a fresh challenge to establish UN and Western security partners in Mali, Russia seems to have become more active in Mali’s internal conflict which adds to their already significant presence in Central African Republic, Sudan, and Libya.

This event is a conversation that will feature experts discussing Russian strategic motivations in Africa, specifically the Sahel region, the local drivers behind the Sahel’s ties with Russia, the extent to which Mali’s experience is likely to be replicated in other Sahelian and African states, and ways in which the United States and EU can coordinate their policy approaches to meet these ongoing and emerging challenges.

On behalf of the Africa Center, the Europe Center, and the Eurasia Center at the Atlantic Council, we invite you to register now and join for a virtual conversation on Tuesday, February 15th, from 3:00 to 4:30pm ET.


Amb. Rama Yade
Senior Director
Africa Center

Cameron Hudson
Nonresident Senior Fellow
Africa Center


Andrew Lebovich
Policy Fellow
European Council on Foreign Relations

Bakary Sambe
Regional Director
Timbuktu Institute African Center for Peace Studies

Catrina Doxsee
Associate Director and Associate Fellow
Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS)

Michael Shurkin
Director of Global Programs
14 North Strategies

Sean McFate
Nonresident Senior Fellow
Africa Center

The Africa Center works to promote dynamic geopolitical partnerships with African states and to redirect US and European policy priorities toward strengthening security and bolstering economic growth and prosperity on the continent.

The Europe Center promotes leadership, strategies and analysis to ensure a strong, ambitious and forward-looking transatlantic relationship.

The Eurasia Center’s mission is to enhance transatlantic cooperation in promoting stability, democratic values and prosperity in Eurasia, from Eastern Europe and Turkey in the West to the Caucasus, Russia and Central Asia in the East.