At the end of last week Russia announced it would be significantly expanding its military advisory role in the Central African Republic (CAR) after earlier this year it established 175 trainers to CAR forces and donated hundreds of weapons weapons following an exemption from a United Nations arms embargo that would allow external forces to bolster the CAR government's fight against militia groups waging an insurgency.
Last Friday Russia said it is deploying 60 more instructors to engage it what international reports have described as "its most significant military foray in Africa in decades". And on Monday, a high Russian official who personally represents President Putin in the region indicated an open-ended commitment to the conflict which could involve sending more troops.
The Russian President's Special Representative for the Middle East and Africa, Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov, addressed the issue of scope and timeline to the operations on Monday to reporters: "It all depends on the will of the country's government, of its legitimate authorities," according to TASS. "When we have the opportunity, we always respond to requests. I am talking about cooperation in the sphere of security."