Professor Alicia Melkangi, at the La Sapienza University in Rome, says that Wagner's presence in Libya is consistent with Russia's broader determination to pressure NATO states and create political outcomes on multiple fronts, accusing Moscow of seeking to control nearby energy sources and sow instability on the EU borders.

"The Russian mercenaries Wagner Group are still present in Libya, despite the war in Ukraine," Melkangi said at the (Shadow of the Mediterranean 2022) Conference, which kicked off on Tuesday.

The conference, organized by the EU maritime operation, IRINI, addressed the Libyan situation in a seminar entitled "The Political Stalemate in Libya and its Repercussions in the Sahel Region."

The Italian professor insisted that the group has only conducted modest adjustments, but there was no significant withdrawal of Russian fighters from Libya in the aftermath of the war in Ukraine, noting that Wagner mercenaries remain entrenched in and around the main military bases and oil facilities in Libya.