At the start of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the most powerful condemnation of Vladimir Putin’s adventurism came from an African.

In a speech that went viral worldwide, Martin Kimani, Kenya’s ambassador to the United Nations, invoked Africa’s traumatic colonial experience to condemn the Russian leader’s imperial revanchism. “(African states) rejected irredentism and expansionism on any basis, including racial, ethnic, religious or cultural factors,” he said. “We reject it again today.”

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