Kagame Has A New Set of Friends

By David Himbara


It looks like Mr. Paul Kagame is the only African head of state that attended the opening ceremony of the Fifa World Cup in Moscow, Russia. Meanwhile, only 17 leaders from around the world attended the opening, including a representative of Kim Jong-un of North Korea. Among the 17 leaders were presidents of two countries only recognized by Russia. Here is the list of Kagame’s new friends enjoying the game of football in Russia.

1. President Raul Khajimba of Abkhazia (recognized only by Russia)


2. President Armen Sarkissian of Armenia


3. President Ilham Aliyev of Azerbaijan


4. President Alexander Lukashenko of Belarus


5. President Juan Evo Morales of Bolivia


6. President Nursultan Nazarbayev of Kazakhstan


7. President Sooronbay Jeenbekov of Kyrgyzstan


8. President Michel Aoun of Lebanon


9. President Igor Dodon of Moldova


10. Chairman of the Presidium of the Supreme People’s Assembly of the DPRK Kim Yong-Nam, North Korea


11. President Juan Carlos Varela of Panama


12. President Horacio Cartes of Paraguay


13. President Paul Kagame of Rwanda


14. Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia Mohammed bin Salman Al Saud


15. President Leonid Tibilov of South Ossetia (recognized only by Russia)


16. President Emomali Rahmon of Tajikistan


17. President Shavkat Mirziyoyev of Uzbekistan


General Kagame, good luck with your new friends. Please don’t forget that a person is known by the company he keeps — or that our character is reflected in our choice of friends. These profound words are not mine. Enjoy the games in Moscow.