Monday, July 24, 2023

Russia's Red Sea Naval Base on Hold for Now

 Foreign Policy published on 15 July 2023 an article titled "Russia's Dreams of a Red Sea Naval Base Are Scuttled--for Now" by Amy Mackinnon, Bobbie Gramer, and Jack Detsch. 

In 2020, Moscow signed a 25 year agreement with Sudan to base up to four naval vessels at Port Sudan on the Red Sea.  The deal appears to have run afoul of internal Sudanese politics and the conflict between Sudan Armed Forces leader and de facto head of state General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan and the head of the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces General Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, according to two U.S. intelligence officials who spoke to Foreign Policy

For its part, Russia is wary of getting involved in a major base deal with Sudan when the country's future is in doubt.  Russia may be looking at other basing options in the Red Sea.  In 2018, it held discussions with Eritrea concerning the establishment of a Russian "logistics hub" on its Red Sea coast.