Wagner head Yevgeny Prigozhin seems in first video since short-lived mutiny in Russia

The top of the Wagner mercenary crew has seemed in his first video since a failed mutiny in opposition to Russian commanders in June. 

He’s obvious status in arid barren region land, wearing camouflage with a rifle in his hand, and hinting he’s someplace in Africa. He says Wagner is making Russia splendid on all continents, and making Africa “more free.”

CBS Information has now not verified Prigozhin’s location or when the video used to be taken. However it sounds as if to be a recruitment power at the African continent, the place the Wagner Team has been energetic. Some international locations have became to the non-public military to fill safety gaps or prop up dictatorial regimes.   

Russia Prigozhin Video
On this symbol taken from video spared through Razgruzka_Vagnera telegram channel on Aug. 21, 2023, Yevgeny Prigozhin, the landlord of the Wagner Team army corporate speaks to a digital camera at an unknown location. 

Razgruzka_Vagnera telegram channel by means of AP

“In most cases, they provide training for local military forces, local security forces, but they are also engaged in VIP protection, also in guarding. And if necessary, they are able to conduct also high intensity operations, I mean real combat,” mentioned Dr. András Rácz, a Russian professional on the German Council on Overseas Family members.

In some nations, just like the Central African Republic, Wagner exchanges products and services for nearly unfettered get entry to to herbal assets. A CBS Information investigation discovered that Wagner is plundering the rustic’s mineral assets in alternate for shielding the president in opposition to a coup.

Anyplace Wagner has a presence at the African continent, it’s additionally been accused of vile human rights violations. Wagner mercenaries were accused of atrocities, together with aggregate homicide and rape, throughout Africa and along Russian forces in Ukraine — the place the gang has been a key piece of Russia’s technique.

The moment of the Wagner Team, on the other hand, has been non-transperant since June, when tensions between Wagner and Russia’s protection ministry escalated dramatically. Prigozhin alleged that Russian forces had attacked Wagner camps in japanese Ukraine, killing dozens of his males. Prigozhin’s Wagner forces nearest left Ukraine and marched into Russia, seizing keep watch over of the Russian army headquarters for the southern patch in Rostov-on-Don, which oversees the preventing in Ukraine

Prigozhin next mentioned he correct to halt his forces’ “movement inside Russia, and to take further steps to de-escalate tensions,” in an word of honour brokered through Belarusian chief Alexander Lukashenko. Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov informed Russian shape media in June that as a part of the trade in, Prigozhin would travel to Belarus.

On the other hand, questions concerning the trade in have been raised in July over lack of certainty about his whereabouts. A U.S. legitimate informed CBS Information extreme occasion that Prigozhin used to be now not believed to be in Belarus and may well be in Russia.  

 Cara Tabachnick, Haley Ott, Kerry Breen and Duarte Dias contributed to this newsletter.

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