Torchlight AI, a Florida-based behavior analytics company, has found evidence suggesting that individuals linked to the Russian military were present in African countries, specifically Niger, Mali, and Gabon, around the time of coups in those nations. The data reveals movement between Russian entities and various government and military sites within these countries. This information, drawn from commercial data sets, has raised questions about the potential involvement of Russian agents in unstable African regions.
- After the Niger coup, a person connected to the Russian military was found to have visited Niamey’s capital and multiple military sites.
- Two individuals linked with the Wagner mercenary group traveled from Russia to Mali, a country with ties to the new government in Niger.
- Before Gabon’s August 30 coup, there was documented movement between the Russian embassy in Libreville and Gabonese government and military facilities.
- Torchlight AI’s tracking tools identified a pattern of visits between a figure in eastern Russia and military sites, culminating in a journey to Niger three days post-coup.
- Although Torchlight AI’s analysis doesn’t definitively implicate the Russian military in the coups, it underscores significant interactions between Russians and influential African officials around the coup periods.