Lukashenko, the nucleus of Wagner remains in Belarus
Vita gazette – Aleksandr Lukashenko: “A good part of Wagner members, ‘up to 10,000’, will remain in Belarus”
After the private plane crash with the name of Yevgeny Prigojin, the leader of the Russian mercenary group Wagner, on the passenger manifest, Belarusian leader Alexander Lukashenko announced that Wagner members would remain in Belarus. Belarus’ state news agency Belta quoted Lukashenko as saying: “Wagner has lived, is alive and will live in Belarus.” The Belarusian president did not provide information on who will succeed Wagner.
Following the allegations of Prigojin’s death, some as-yet-unconfirmed reports suggested that hundreds of Wagner’s fighters had fled Belarus.
“Some have gone on vacation, others have decided to live on the edge, but in a few days, all of them will be here, up to 10,000 people, although now there is no need to keep them here,” Lukashenko said, quoted by a Telegram channel close to the presidency taken up by the Russian agency Interfax.
Lukashenko: Putin warned Prigojin
Lukashenko mediated between Russian President Vladimir Putin and leader Wagner after Prigojin’s brief rebellion against the Russian military’s ruling elite last June. With the agreement reached thanks to Lukashenko’s mediation, the revolution ended, and the Kremlin announced that members of Prigojin and Wagner would go to Belarus. Regarding the compromise, the Belarusian leader said that Prigojin has never asked him for security.
Stating that he warned Putin about a possible assassination attempt on leader Wagner shortly, Lukashenko said that he received severe information in this direction during a recent visit to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and that this was done through the Russian ambassador to the UAE, who said he shared information with Putin and the Federal Security Service. The President of Belarus, who later contacted Prigojin, said Wagner’s leader confirmed that Putin had warned him based on this information.
Peskov: The claims of the West are false
Allegations that Moscow played a role in the plane crash in which Prigojin was reportedly found to have been rejected by the Kremlin. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said there was a lot of speculation surrounding the impact and the tragic deaths of people on board the plane, including Prigojin.
Asked if they had received official confirmation of Prigojin’s death, Peskov replied by quoting Putin’s statements on Thursday. Noting that Putin said all necessary forensic analysis, including DNA tests, will be performed now, the spokesman said, “Some official findings will be released when they are ready for publication.”
It was announced that the private plane, which took off for St. Petersburg and declaring Prigojin and six Wagner members to be on the passenger list, crashed and exploded in the Tver region, 200 kilometres north-west of Moscow, and all ten people on board lost their lives.