Western European nations condemned the interim Mali government for hiring Russian mercenaries in an attempt to restore order in the West African nation (BBC). The mercenaries are from Wagner Group, a Russian security company employed in the annexation of the Crimea. France said Putin‘s Russian government is funding Wagner Group (APNews).
Wagner Group is known for it’s backing of General Khalifa Haftar of Libya (Wikipedia). Haftar attempted to take over Tripoli and evict the UN backed Libya interim government. Haftar, under a UN arms embargo, was also allegedly aided by everyone’s favorite contractor Erik Prince. Prince is currently under investigation by the UN and the FBI for his involvement (Reuters).