Russian dictator Vladimir Putin hopes to keep Wagner’s mercenary forces under a new commander and cut the group’s ties with Yevgeny Prigozhin, the Institute for the Study of War writing the 14th of July.
In a July 13 interview, Putin told Russian media outlet Kommersant that he offered Wagner’s soldiers the chance to fight under another commander in a June 29 meeting. Putin claimed that this meeting included Prigozhin and 35 other Wagner commanders.
Putin said he gave the private military company the choice to serve under a commander who led Wagner’s troops for the past 16 months and uses the callsign “Seda.”
In Putin’s account, all 35 commanders acquiesced to this offer, while Prigozhin disagreed and did not see the other officers acquiesce.
Putin’s remarks fit with the ISW’s assessment that the Kremlin wishes to hold Wagner’s forces together and simply oust Prigozhin, rather than break up the Wagner Group or sever ties with the mercenary company altogether.
In the interview, Putin repeated the “absurd idea” that private mercenary groups are not active in Russia, the ISW wrote.
Meanwhile, the Belarusian government today announcement its official cooperation with the Wagner Group, which began to organize training with Belarusian soldiers.
Russia after the Wagner revolt: Will Putin stay afloat or face more unrest?
The rebellion organized by the Russian mercenary group Wagner in June is seen by many analysts as a sign of the weakness and fragility of Vladimir Putin’s regime. First, several thousand armed mercenaries managed to march hundreds of kilometers from Rostov to the vicinity of Moscow, and no one