Barely a day after the United States Pentagon revealed that Kenya was an active member of Kenya of the Ukraine Defense Contact Group, Russia stated that it would continue having a cordial relationship with Kenya.
This was communicated by the Russian Ambassador to Kenya Dmitry Maksimychev on the occasion of marking Diplomats Day on Saturday, February 10.
Additionally, Maksimychev stated that Africa was a high-priority region for Russia in terms of foreign policy.
In his message, the Ambassador emphasised that as far as Kenya was concerned, Russia was making every effort to develop cooperation between the two countries.
Defence CS Aden Duale meeting his US counterpart Lloyd Austin on February 7, 2023.
Lloyd J Austin
“Our trade grows steadily as I understand according to the Kenyan statistics, the trade volume between Russia and Kenya has reached $500 million (Ksh81 billion),” Maksimychev stated.
He added that Vladimir Putin’s government was doing everything possible to increase trade volumes between Kenya and Russia.
“Russia is ready to cooperate with Kenya in every field that is of interest to the Kenyans themselves,” Maksimychev promised.
The ambassador noted that areas of cooperation in trade centred on agricultural products, chemicals, fertilisers, and construction materials among others.
On Africa in general, Maksimychev pointed out the Africa-Russia summits held in 2017 and 2023 serve as an indicator that Moscow highly prioritised Africa in its Russian foreign policy.
“Both events played an extremely important role in the expansion of our partnership with Africa,” he remarked.
On February 8, the United States Secretary of Defence Lloyd J. Austin III revealed that Kenya was part of the Ukraine Defense Contact Group, an alliance of over 50 countries that gives military aid to Ukraine.
This was during a meeting with Defence Cabinet Secretary Aden Duale at the Pentagon, US Department of Defence Headquarters.
CS Duale on his part remarked that Kenya was ready for a long-term strategic alliance with the United States for the promotion of peace and stability.
Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy (Left) and President William Ruto (Right) during their meeting in New York on Tuesday, September 19, 2023.