The increasing presence of foreign military bases on the continent of Africa by ‘foreign powers’ has raised many questions. The security, economic, and political interests of some nations have been forwarded as the motives behind such a move. However, while nationalists and Pan ‘Africanists’ across the world viewed it as a move designed to re-colonize the continent; the resources of the continent unquestionably remain an incessant target.
Below are some of the countries in Africa with foreign military bases:
Djibouti: With a population of less than a million, Djibouti is the smallest country in mainland Africa. However, there are approximately seven foreign military bases in Djibouti. It is on top of the list of countries with foreign military bases in Africa. France (Les Force Francaise Stationness au Djibouti), the United States of America (Camp Lemonnier), Italy, Japan (Japan Self-Defence Force Base Djibouti and China’s Chinese People’s Liberation Army Support Base in Djibouti ) are all operating military bases in Djibouti. Djibouti is a mandatory passage for a significant maritime trade route. It controls access to the Red Sea and India Ocean.
Gabon: The Gabonese republic host France’s ‘Les element Francais au Gabou (EFG)’ army base. Gabon has diamond, gold, petroleum, natural gas niobium among others. It was granted independence on August 17, 1960. It registers significant progress compared to other countries on the continent.
Ivory Coast: The former French colony gained Independence on 7th August 1960. However, Ivory Coast still hosts France’s “Les Force Francaises en Cote d’Ivoire” military base. France still maintains considerable political influence over Ivory Coast.
Kenya: Kenya is among the few former British colonies (if not the only one) who host foreign military bases. It hosts the ‘British Arm Training Unit Kenya’. This came to be through a Defence Cooperation Agreement between Kenya that allowed up to 10,000 British Service Personnel per year to be deployed in Kenya for a military exercise. There was, however, a diplomatic dispute regarding the agreement in 2013 toward 2015. Kenya gained independence from the United Kingdom on 12 December 1963. It is one of the economic giants of East Africa.
Federal Republic of Somalia: Somalia has an estimated population of 14.3 million. The former Italian colony gained independence in 1960. It is one of most the troubled countries in Africa. A flexing foreign power, Turkey runs a military base in Somalia called “Camp TURKSOM” with more than 1000 personnel. The United States of America is also present in Somalia busy (or pretending) chasing leaders of Al-Shabaab.