When the United Nations General Assembly voted overwhelmingly on March 2 to condemn Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, African countries accounted for almost half of the 35 abstentions including South Africa. The conflict triggered by Russia’s invasion has complicated the challenges and sources of stress already facing Southern Africa. A few countries are sensing long-term growth opportunities from the crisis. Specifically, Africa’s natural gas could reduce Europe’s dependence on Russian energy. Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has upended the existing world order and with it the global energy, production, distribution, and financial systems. Russia and China are openly challenging the Pax Americana. But the question of what the next world order will look like remains wide open. On February 24, 2022, Russia launched a large-scale invasion of Ukraine, its neighbour to the southwest, marking a dramatic escalation of the Russo-Ukrainian War that began in 2014, Putin announced a “special military operation” in eastern Ukraine; minutes later, missiles began to hit locations across Ukraine, including the capital, Kyiv. What does this mean to Southern Africa? According to an article by Project Syndicate dated June 23, 2022, many Africans are convinced that the war in Ukraine is not their problem to solve. But failure
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