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Ukrainian flag waves during a joint military exercise Rapid Trident 2019 at the International Center for Peacekeeping and Security of the National Academy of Land Forces near Lviv. (Mykola Tys/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)
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Ukraine has opened an embassy in Ivory Coast, a day after opening an embassy in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry announced on April 12.

President Volodymyr Zelensky said in December 2023 that one of Ukraine's foreign policy priorities for 2024 is continuing to develop ties with African countries, as Moscow seeks to expand its influence on the continent.

The embassy in Ivory Coast was opened in the capital of Abidjan by Maksym Subkh, Ukraine's special representative for the Middle East and Africa and former ambassador to Algeria, on April 11.

Subkh said that Ukraine decided to open an embassy in Ivory Coast because it is "rightly considered one of the leaders in the West African region" and Ukraine's ambition to "intensify comprehensive cooperation" with partners in Ivory Coast.

The day before, Subkh opened the embassy in Kinshasa, the capital of the DRC.

"The opening of the Ukrainian diplomatic institution in Kinshasa and the recent opening of the Honorary Consulate of the DRC in Uzhhorod are evidence of the interest of our countries in the activation of bilateral cooperation at all levels," Subkh said.

In December 2022, Zelensky said he would like to see Ukraine eventually have a presence in 30 African countries.

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Adil Muhammad, a Somali, sits in a Russian military uniform among other prisoners of war (POWs) in a press conference in Ukraine’s capital in mid-March. The former infantryman was captured in combat near Marinka in Donetsk Oblast while fighting with the Russian army in Ukraine in early 2024, five
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