After his election to the French presidency in 2007, Nicolas Sarkozy promised to put an end to undue French influence in the affairs of former African colonies. But the path to disengagement is proving to be a long, slow process.
At the end of the 1990s, French policy in Africa came under some of the harshest criticism yet as French-African relations continued their inexorable decline. Dubiously acquired goods, the French government’s focus on aid to Africa instead of development and coups d’état fomented from Paris all added to a climate of mistrust in the era following the first years of African independence.
Jacques Foccart, former chief advisor on African policy to then president Charles de Gaulle, was looking to solidify certain ties with the continent for a France newly released from its former empire.
Date created : 2010-02-15