Wagner chief Prigozhin killed
Wagner chief Yevgeny Prigozhin has today been confirmed dead in a plane crash near Moscow on Wednesday.
Russia‘s Investigation Committee said the results of genetic tests had confirmed the identities of the 10 people who died in a plane crash last Wednesday and they included the founder of the Wagner mercenary group.
Russia’s civil aviation authority earlier this week said Prigozhin, along with some of his top lieutenants, were on the list of those on board the plane that crashed.
Prigozhin’s private jet came down north-west of Moscow, killing all those on board.
The Kremlin has denied speculation it was to blame for the crash.
It comes as a resurfaced clip of the Wagner leader has resurfaced on social media, stoking conspiracy theories about his demise.
In the 40-second clip, the Russian mercenary boss Yevgeny Prigozhin compared Russia’s trajectory in the war to a plane that will “fall apart in the air”.
In the video taken from an interview originally published on April 29 with Russian military blogger Semyon Pegov, Prigozhin said he would rather be killed than lie to his country.
Wagner boss Yevgeny Prigozhin confirmed dead in plane crash by Russian investigators
Russia’s Investigative Committee has confirmed Wagner chief Yevgeny Prigozhin was killed in a plane crash.
The committee said in a statement Sunday that after forensic testing, all 10 bodies recovered at the site of the crash were identified, and their identities “conform to the manifest.”
Russia’s civil aviation authority earlier this week said Prigozhin, along with some of his top lieutenants, were on the list of those on board the plane that crashed Wednesday.
Maryam Zakir-Hussain27 August 2023 11:54
Wagner mercenary chief Prigozhin confirmed dead in plane crash
Russia‘s Investigation Committee said on Sunday the results of genetic tests had confirmed the identities of the 10 people who died in a plane crash last Wednesday and that they included the founder of the Wagner mercenary group, Yevgeny Prigozhin.
Maryam Zakir-Hussain27 August 2023 11:50
Putin orders Wagner fighters to sign oath of allegiance following Prigozhin plane crash
The decree was published on the Kremlin’s website and signed with immediate effect by Mr Putin, as his spokesperson Dmitry Peskov insisted that claims Prigozhin had been killed on the Russian president’s orders were an “absolute lie”.
The wording of the oath includes a line in which those who take it promise to strictly follow the orders of commanders and senior leaders, as questions hang over the fate of the mercenaries – many of whom had already relocated to Belarus following their mutinous march on Moscow in June.
Maryam Zakir-Hussain27 August 2023 11:30
Old video sparks wild theories on fate of Russia’s Prigozhin- part two
Hundreds of responses had been posted on Grey Zone within a few hours.
“But he knew,” a Telegram user whose name translates to “outpost” wrote in the first response.
Some posts speculated Prigozhin was alive. One said he would “soon jump out of a snuffbox and make the devils crap themselves.”
Another said it would be cool if Prigozhin and Sergei Surovikin, the former commander of Russia‘s war effort, reportedly removed as head of the air force the day of the crash, “are sitting in Jamaica, drinking pina colada and taking a drag on a huge joint.”
Some posts pointed to the Kremlin, with one comment saying the crash was the handiwork of President Vladimir Putin, adding, “You have to be an amoeba not to understand this.”
Some posts blamed France, others Ukraine. One post said Ukraine had killed Prigozhin by order of US special services “and the Anglo-Saxons” and added, “it is inconvenient for us to lose such a hero,” to which someone responded with three crying-laughing emojis.
Maryam Zakir-Hussain27 August 2023 10:45
Old video sparks wild theories on fate of Russia’s Prigozhin
A 40-second clip of an old interview in which Russian mercenary boss Yevgeny Prigozhin said he would rather be killed than lie to his country, and talked about a plane disintegrating in the sky, unleashed a flood of online theorizing on Sunday about his presumed death.
Russia‘s aviation authority said the Wagner group chief was on a private jet that crashed northwest of Moscow with no survivors on Wednesday, exactly two months after he led a failed mutiny against army chiefs. The Kremlin said Western suggestions he had been killed on its orders were an “absolute lie.”
In the clip, taken from an interview originally published on April 29 with Russian military blogger Semyon Pegov, Prigozhin said Russia was on the brink of disaster because the defence establishment was gradually kicking out truth-tellers who refused to suck up to upper management.
“Today we have reached the boiling point,” he said in the clip published on Grey Zone, Wagner’s Telegram channel. “Why am I speaking so honestly? Because I don’t have the right, before those people who will live on in this country. They are now being lied to. Better kill me.”
He added, “But I will not lie, I must say honestly that Russia is on the brink of disaster. And if these cogs are not adjusted today, then the plane will fall apart in the air.”
Maryam Zakir-Hussain27 August 2023 10:20
Putin’s hit list: from poisoned tea to mysterious falls, the grisly fate of the Kremlin’s enemies
The methods are many and varied: poisoning, shooting, plane crashes and, the simplest of them all, the mysterious falling out of a window. John Kampfner on how Putin transformed state assassinations of his foes and political opponents onto an industrial scale:
‘‘The reason why it all happened is one man’s hatred and fear – one man hiding in a bunker. I mortally offended him by surviving an attempt at my life he ordered. And then I committed an even more serious offence: I didn’t go into hiding. And that’s driving this thieving little man in his bunker out of his mind.’’
Putin’s hit list: inside the Kremlin’s killing machine
The methods are many and varied: poisoning, shooting, plane crashes and, the simplest of them all, the mysterious falling out of a window. John Kampfner on how Putin transformed state assassinations of his foes and political opponents onto an industrial scale
Maryam Zakir-Hussain27 August 2023 09:30
Ukraine forces ‘break through Putin’s strongest line of defence’
Ukrainian forces believe they have broken through the most difficult line of Russian defences in the south and will now be able to advance more quickly, a commander fighting in the south has said.
Ukrainian forces said on Wednesday they had raised the national flag in the settlement of Robotyne in the southern Zaporizhzhia region, about 10 km (six miles) south of the frontline town of Orikhiv.
“We don’t stop here,” said a commander who led some of the troops into Robotyne and who uses the callsign “Skala,” eponymous with the battalion which he leads.
“Next we have (the town of) Berdiansk, and then more. I made it clear to my fighters at once: our goal is not Robotyne, our goal is (the Sea of) Azov.”
Robotyne is about 100 km from Berdiansk, a port on the shores of the Sea of Azov, and 85 km from the strategic city of Melitopol. Both are occupied by Russian forces following Moscow’s full-scale invasion in February last year.
“We have passed the main roads that were mined. We are coming to those lines where we can go (forward). I’m sure we’ll go faster from here,” Skala said.
He said two houses were still under Russian control in Robotyne: “We’re fighting for them, and then we’ll have full control (of Robotyne).”
Maryam Zakir-Hussain27 August 2023 08:57
‘Gangster’ Putin committed ‘most ostentatious’ act of savagery in our lifetimes, says Boris
The former prime minister has described the downing of the Wagner chief’s plane as “violent liquidation” and claimed that Putin was “being transformed before our eyes into an Asiatic despot”.
“I cannot think of another example of such ostentatious and uninhibited savagery by a world leader – not in our lifetimes,” he said.
Maryam Zakir-Hussain27 August 2023 08:45
I warned Wagner chief to watch out for threats to his life, says Belarus president Lukashenko
Belarusian president Alexander Lukashenko has said that he warned the Wagner mercenary chief, Yevgeny Prigozhin, to “watch out” for threats to his life before the plane crash in which he is believed to have died.
Mr Lukashenko helped broker a deal between Prigozhin and the Kremlin that ended an attempted mutiny by Wagner forces against Moscow in June – an uprising that marked the most significant challenge to Vladimir Putin’s authority in more than two decades in power.
Two months to the day after that revolt was halted, an aircraft believed to be carrying Prigozhin and a number of other members of Wagner’s senior leadership crashed on Wednesday.
Mr Putin had called the Wagner mutiny treason, and had initially vowed to crush it. A number of world leaders have suggested that he would not let the embarrassment of that incident stand.
Maryam Zakir-Hussain27 August 2023 08:00
Ukraine says it destroyed four cruise missiles during overnight Russian air strike
The Ukrainian military destroyed four cruise missiles over northern and central Ukraine during an overnight Russian air strike, Kyiv’s air force reported early today.
It said Ukrainian forces had detected up to eight airborne targets but that there were no immediate reports of strikes, adding that the rest of the targets were “probably false”.
The air force also said the attack involved five Russian strategic bombers.
Maryam Zakir-Hussain27 August 2023 07:20