South Africa could “be charged with complicity” and has been warned of “consequences” by allowing Russian naval drills in the Indian Ocean.
Russian warships are docked off the port of Durban and are holding military drills, naval exercises and are conducting live firing on targets in the exercise known as Mosi-2.
Anger is growing among South Africa’s opposition and Darren Bergman, Shadow Minister for International Relations and Cooperation and MP for the country’s official opposition party told The i his they could be on a slippery slope.
Bergman warned, “If Belarus can be charged with complicity, why can’t South Africa?… I believe this will have consequences.
“I believe this will have consequences.”
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China, Russia and South Africa have been conducting military exercises together in the Indian Ocean which could be very “damaging.”
Bergan believes the military exercises with the three countries, “will definitely have an impact when it comes to trade agreements and aid.”
He added: “Any further exclusion from the international community is going to be hugely damaging [to South Africa’s struggling economy].”
Bergan’s party, the Democratic Alliance, have expressed outrage at the ruling African National Congress (ANC) over their actions and showing complicity with Russia along with civil society.
In a statement issued jointly by The Green Connection, Extinction Rebellion Cape Town, Kai Tikquoa Conservancy and the Ukrainian Association of South Africa, they said, “We are concerned mainly that the South Africa government has welcomed Russian military aggression into the previously peaceful waters of the Southern Ocean.”
The Russian and Chinese naval drills have caught the eye of the US who have heavily criticised South Africa’s close relationship with Russia.
The White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said, “The United States has concerns about any country … exercising with Russia as Russia wages a brutal war against Ukraine.”
South Africa has long standing ties with Moscow as the Soviet Union helped to support Cyril Ramaphosa’s now, the ruling African National Congress (ANC) party in their fight to bring down apartheid.