Wagner mercenary boss Yevgeny Prigozhin killed in plane crash with nine others, Russian authorities say


A screen grab captured from a video shared online shows Yevgeny Prigozhin, the founder of the Russian private security company Wagner, holding a rifle in a desert area while wearing camouflage in a video for the first time after his rebellion against the Russian administration in an unspecified location in Africa on August 21, 2023. In the footage shared on the Telegram channel ‘Wagner’s evacuation’, Prigozhin stated that they have made Russia ‘even greater’ on all continents, including Africa. 

Wagner Account | Anadolu Agency | Getty Images

The chief of Russian mercenary group Wagner, Yevgeny Prigozhin, is believed to have been killed in a plane crash, Russian state media reported Wednesday.

The aircraft, a business jet, crashed in the Tver region northwest of Moscow, with all 10 people onboard killed, according to Russia’s state news agency TASS. Prigozhin was on its list of passengers.

While Russian officials said that Prigozhin was on the passenger list, it was not immediately clear if he was in the aircraft.

The Russian Ministry of Emergency Services wrote on its Telegram account: “In the Tver region, near the village of Kuzhenkino, a private Embraer Legacy aircraft crashed while flying from Moscow to St. Petersburg. There were 10 people on board, including 3 crew members.”

“According to preliminary information, all on board were killed. EMERCOM of Russia is conducting search operations,” the post read, according to a Google translation.

The 62-year old paramilitary leader, once a close confidant of Putin’s, led a short-lived mutiny against the Russian government in late June after spending months vocally criticizing his country’s top brass. His forces, known for their particularly violent battlefield tactics, spearheaded a number of battles for Russia on the Ukrainian front.

An apparent deal was made between Prigozhin and Russian President Vladimir Putin after the aborted coup, which was meant to see the Wagner Group leader and his forces relocate to Belarus, with Prigozhin himself pledging to leave Russia for good. It is unclear why the aircraft he was listed as being on was near Moscow.

This is a breaking news story, please check back later for more.


Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button