Wagner Chief Yevgeny Prigozhin Emerges In Video Address Post-Coup Attempt, Says Making Africa 'More Free'

In his first video appearance since the attempted coup in Russia, Wagner chief Yevgeny Prigozhin hinted at his location being in Africa, according to a BBC report from Monday.

The footage, shared through Telegram channels associated with the Wagner mercenary group, depicts Prigozhin donning combat attire and asserting that the group is contributing to making Africa “more free.”

Wagner, with its lucrative business interests, is thought to have thousands of mercenaries in Africa, including Mali and the Central African Republic (CAR), where they are accused of committing war crimes.

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Last month, the UK sanctioned two Wagner operation heads in CAR for alleged torture and civilian killings. The US also accused Wagner fighters of illicit gold deals in Africa.

In his video message, Prigozhin articulated that Wagner is engaged in mineral exploration while also countering Islamist militants and various criminal elements. He further emphasized the group’s recruitment efforts and affirmed their commitment to persistently accomplishing the assigned objectives, underscoring their dedication to fulfilling the promises they made.

Prigozhin, known as “Putin’s chef”, has been maintaining a low public profile after leading a short-lived mutiny in June. The coup attempt lasted only 24 hours, with some 5,000 Wagner troops seizing control of Rostov-on-Don, a city in Southern Russia.

Following negotiations with the Kremlin, which were facilitated by Belarusian leader Alexander Lukashenko, the charges against Prigozhin were dismissed, and he received an invitation to relocate to Belarus.

Photo Courtesy: Shutterstock.com

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Posted In: NewsPoliticsGeneralAlexander LukashenkoRussiaVladimir PutinWagnerYevgeny Prigozhin
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