Last Updated on 3 months by Admin
A private plane carrying Russian mercenary leader Yevgeny Prigozhin and nine other people crashed in Russia on Wednesday 23rd August 2023, killing everyone on board.
The plane was flying from Moscow to St. Petersburg when it crashed in the Tver region, about 180 kilometers northwest of Moscow. The cause of the crash is not yet known, but some reports say that the plane may have been shot down by Russian air defenses.
Prigozhin was the founder of the Wagner Group, a private military contractor that has been involved in conflicts in Ukraine, Syria, and Libya. He was also a close associate of Russian President Vladimir Putin.
The crash and the sacking of air force chief senior Russian general Sergei Surovikin happened the same day. Gen Surovikin was a close ally of Prigozhin and had not been seen in public since the mutiny.
The mutiny was an aborted attempt by Prigozhin to march on Moscow with his Wagner troops. The move came after months of tension with Russian military commanders over the invasion of Ukraine launched by President Putin in 2014.
The stand-off seemed to have been settled by a deal which allowed Wagner troops to move to Belarus or join the Russian army. However, Prigozhin himself agreed to relocate to Belarus – but has apparently been able to move freely, making public appearances in Russia and releasing a video of him purportedly in Africa.
The crash of Prigozhin’s plane is a major development, and it is not yet clear what the implications will be. It is possible that the crash was an accident, but it is also possible that it was sabotage. The investigation into the crash is ongoing.