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Friday, December 8, 2023

Wagner Group leader confirms cancellation of Moscow march – World News


Units of the group staged a mutiny, took control of military and administrative sites in Rostov-on-Don, and advanced towards Moscow. However, Prigorzhin confirmed that the advancing column will now return to the camp as planned, avoiding major bloodshed. According to “Russia Today”, he claimed that during this operation, their fighters did not shed a drop of blood.

There have been reports that the private military agency clashed with Russian forces and shot down multiple planes during the mutiny. Earlier, the press service of Belarusian President Aleksandr Lukashenko announced the success of the negotiations with Prigozhin. Lukashenko said Prigozhin had accepted his suggestion to stop the movement of the Wagner fighters and work to de-escalate the situation. The statement also mentioned the safety and security of PMC fighters.

The uprising, which began Friday and continued into Saturday, saw Wagner’s bloc seize an army headquarters in southern Russia but ultimately failed to secure support from other forces. The deal brokered by Lukashenko included an amnesty for Prigozhin.

The Wagner Group, founded by Evgeny Prigozhin, has had tense relations with the Russian Ministry of Defense (MOD) in the past. Prigozhin criticized senior military officials and refused to sign a formal contract with the Russian Defense Ministry. Late Friday, he blamed Russian forces for an attack on Wagner’s field camp that led to the group’s march on Moscow. Russian President Vladimir Putin condemned the actions, calling them acts of treason, and said steps were being taken to restore order.

After the talks between Lukashenko and Prigozhin, Wagner’s convoy stopped heading for Moscow and returned to base. The Kremlin announced it had dropped the case against Prigozhin and traveled to Belarus to avoid bloodshed. Wagner members will not be prosecuted for their achievements in Ukraine.

At the same time, the United States has also postponed economic sanctions against the Wagner Group due to developments in order to avoid the situation appearing biased.

The Wagner Group has been under U.S. sanctions since 2017 and faces further restrictions for allegedly threatening religious freedom in Africa. The United States and its allies such as France, Germany and the United Kingdom discussed the situation in Russia but made no public comments or forecasts.


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