Office of the President of Russia has confirmed speculations that the Wagner Private military group leader, Yevgeny Prigozhin who led short-lived mutiny against the government had meeting with President Vladimir Putin days after the failed Coup.
Kremlin said Russian President Vladimir Putin met with Wagner boss, Yevgeny Prigozhin on June 29, 5 days after the mercenary leader’s short-lived revolt.
It would be recalled that last week, Russian media reported Prigozhin was seen at his offices in St. Petersburg. The meeting, according to Reuters, was first reported by French newspaper, Liberation, which said Prigozhin had met Putin and the head of the National Guard, Viktor Zolotov, and SVR Foreign Intelligence boss, Sergei Naryshkin.
Kremlin spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, on Monday confirmed that the meeting between the Wagner boss and President Putin was held on June 29.
The less than 24 hours mutiny led by Yevgeny Prigozhin is widely considered to have posed the most serious challenge to Putin since he came to power on the last day of 1999.
“The only thing we can say is that the president gave his assessment of the company’s (Wagner’s) actions at the front during the Special Military Operation (in Ukraine) and also gave his assessment of the events of 24 June (the day of the mutiny),” Kremlin spokesperson, Dmitry Peskov said in quote while speaking with reporters on Monday.
According to Dmitry Peskov, President Vladimir Putin listened to the commanders’ own explanations of what had happened and offered them further options for employment and combat.
Dmitry Peskov said the meeting which lasted for three hours had Prigozhin, along with 35 Wagner commanders, invited to the meeting held in Moscow.
Days back, it was reported that Prigozhin left Belarus, where he was exiled after the failed mutiny and returned to Russia after his mansion was ransacked by Russia security operatives. The Wagner boss was said to have return to receive back the money found during searches in his office at St. Petersburg
The Russian newspaper, Fontanka reports that the law enforcers initially had no intention of returning the money they found – 10 billion rubles which is $111 million, other hundreds of thousands of dollars, and five bars of gold.
President of Belarus, Alexander Lukashenko had said last week Thursday that the Wagner Criminal Private military group leader, Yevgeny Prigozhin that led short-lived mutiny against Russia Government, left the Belarusian territory last Thursday back to his own country, Russia.
President, Alexander Lukashenko disclosed this last week Thursday during interactive interview with Belarusian and foreign media in Minsk.
Lukashenko said in quote: “The Wagner fighters did not move to our country, and they are still in their camps where they gathered after Bakhmut”.
Adding that, the leader of the “Wagner” group, Yevgeny Prigozhin, “is in Russia and is not present in our country,” indicating that “he may have gone since morning to Moscow.”
An expert had said that the Wagner leader Yevgeny Prigozhin may not have ever made it to Belarus, having not been seen since he struck a deal with the Kremlin to halt a mutiny.
Matthew Sussex, from the ANU’S Strategic and Defence Studies Centre during a media interview said where mercenary leader went after the failed uprising remains unclear.
Wagner group leader exiled to Belarus after talks the Belarusian president held with Prigozhin, and Russian President Vladimir Putin, and Putin’s approval of a proposal by Lukashenko to stop the Wagner group’s movements on Russian soil which ended the less than a day mutiny.