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Putin facing a coup?Rebel mercenaries enter Russian military district | Video | World News

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A few hours later, Mercenary Master Wagner vows to overthrow Russia’s military leadershipVideos on social media allegedly showed its troops bypassing Rostov-on-Don, home to the military headquarters of Russia’s southern region, which also oversees the fighting in Ukraine. There were also reports of clashes between members of mercenary groups and Russian troops in the Pavlovsk region of the Voronezh region.

Wagner’s troops at the headquarters of the Southern Military District in Rostov, Russia.

HT was unable to independently verify the videos and reports.

Wagnerian leader Yevgeny Prigozhin has called for an armed rebellion to oust Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu in what is seen as his most direct challenge to President Vladimir Putin. At the same time, Moscow has stepped up security measures in a sign of the seriousness of the threat.

Prigozhin claimed earlier on Saturday that his troops had crossed into Russia from Ukraine and had arrived in Rostov, saying they encountered no resistance from young conscripts at checkpoints and that his troops “did not interact with children.” fight”.

“But we will destroy anyone who stands in our way,” he said in a series of angry videos and audio posts on social media that began late Friday. “We’re on our way and we’ll go all the way to the end.”

In a new audio message, Prigozhin said his 25,000-strong army was “prepared to die” and vowed to overthrow Russia’s military leadership.

“All of us are ready to die. All 25,000, and then another 25,000,” Yevgeny Prigozhin said in a new audio message. Russian people to die.”

Meanwhile, anti-Kremlin figure Mikhail Khodorkovsky urged Russians to support Wagner.

“We need to help now, and then, if necessary, we will also fight,” Kremlin-fighting former oil tycoon Khodorkovsky wrote on social media. He said it was important to support “even the devil” if he decided to confront the Kremlin. “Yes, this is just the beginning.”

Why the Wagner Group Rebelled

Wagner’s troops played a vital role in the Russo-Ukrainian War, successfully capturing Bakhmut, where the bloodiest and longest battle has ever taken place. Prigozhin, an increasingly critical critic of Russia’s military leadership, claimed on Friday that Chief of Staff General Valery Gerasimov scrambled warplanes to attack his convoy, which was driving alongside vehicles carrying civilians .

Prigozhin also claimed that his mercenaries shot down a Russian military helicopter that opened fire on a civilian convoy.

(Inputs from Reuters, AFP, AP)

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