Russian paramilitary group the Wagner Group insurrection against the Russian government. Rising hostilities between Yevgeny Prigozhin, the head of Wagner, and the Russian Ministry of Defense gave rise to the uprising. Russian paramilitary group Wagner is a private military company. It has been called the de facto private army of Yevgeny Prigozhin, a former close associate of Russian President Vladimir Putin, and it is made up of mercenaries. Owner Prigozhin, formerly renowned as Putin’s chef for serving state occasions with his catering company, created it in 2014.
According to John Kirby, a spokesman for the U.S. National Security Council, the Wagner Group employs over 50,000 people in Ukraine, including 40,000 prisoners from Russian jails and about 10,000 contractors. According to the Washington-based think tank Center for Strategic and International Studies, Wagner frequently has direct ties to the Russian government and participated in actions in Ukraine in 2014 and 2015. Wagner should be considered a traditional proxy organization because it is a private military firm.
The Wagner Group has reportedly been involved in other places of the world, including Africa, according to the US Department of Defense. Russia supplied its military weapons, such as fighter aircraft and armored vehicles, so that Russia could establish a presence in that nation. It has participated in the civil crisis in Libya. Additionally, it was transferred to the Central African Republic during its civil conflict, when it was said that the organization was responsible for killing people, attacking U.N. forces, and attacking mainly Muslim neighborhoods. There, a gold mine was taken over by the Group. According to Human Rights Watch, suspected Wagner Group members have killed defenseless men and perpetrated other atrocities.
While publicly accusing Russia’s military leadership on Friday of attacking his forces, Prigozhin has this time accused them of being incompetent in Ukraine. He asserted that its rear camps were the target of a missile attack. He claimed that the military leadership of Russia was to blame for the deaths of 2,000 fighters without offering any supporting data. On his official Telegram account, Prigozhin promised that those who destroyed their lads and cost many lives will be punished. He saw the rebellion as a march for justice rather than an armed uprising. The militia leader, whose militiamen were instrumental in Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, issued a series of Telegram messages on Friday and Saturday threatening retaliation. He declared that his troops were approaching the Rostov region and they were prepared to obliterate anything that stood in their way.
Russia rejects Prigozhin’s allegations and has urged Wagner fighters to defy orders and arrest Prigozhin. Putin considered Wagner’s actions as a stab in the back of Russian servicemen. According to the Russian state news agency TASS, extra security was put in place in Moscow, and military vehicles were stationed close to the Russian Parliament to prevent any incidents. Wagner militia members were instructed to imprison their leader and file a criminal complaint against the militia leader on the grounds that he had called for an armed uprising by Russia’s domestic intelligence agency, the Federal Security Service (FSB). According to CNN, the Moscow region and the Voronezh region had counterterrorism operations in place. This announcement was made by the Russian National Anti-Terrorism Committee. The anti-terrorist regime included document checks, enhanced public order protection, telephone monitoring, and restrictions on communications as well as traffic and pedestrian mobility. Ramzan Kadyrov, the leader of Chechnya and a close Putin friend, was prepared to use force if necessary to put down the Prigozhin uprising.
Before their leader Yevgeny Prigozhin ordered them to return to base to prevent bloodshed, Russian mercenary warriors from the Wagner organization had taken control of Rostov-on-Don, one of Russia’s major cities, and were en route to Moscow. After addressing the situation with Putin, Alexander Lukashenko, the president of Belarus, engaged in negotiations with the mercenary chief to halt Wagner’s troop march. Prigozhin agreed to Lukashenko’s suggestion to obstruct the Wagner group’s approach and take additional measures to defuse the situation. The speaker declared that understanding the responsibility that Russian blood would be spilled on one side, they were turning their columns around and going back to field camps as planned.
According to Aljazeera, Putin was under the gravest threat to his 22-year rule yet as rebel mercenaries moved closer to the Russian capital after taking control of a crucial southern military post. But following the talks with Alexander Lukashenko, the president of Belarus, Prigozhin and all of his soldiers left the Russian military’s command center in Rostov-on-Don. No charges would be filed against him, and now he relocated to Belarus. According to a source from the Kremlin, Wagner fighters who abstained from the march on Moscow would be given military employment opportunities.
According to CBC, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky described Wagner’s violent insurrection as a glaring example of Putin’s frailty and his invasion of Ukraine. He added, “Ukraine is fighting to pull Russian soldiers out of those territories, as well as the Crimean Peninsula, which Moscow used as a staging area and supply route in the 16-month-old conflict and unlawfully annexed in 2014. Attempts to reach two captured port cities on the Sea of Azov and destroy Russia’s land bridge to Crimea could be made by Ukrainian forces if the counteroffensive succeeds in breaching Russian positions in the south.
The Russian president viewed the rebellion as a betrayal and a stab in the heart of his nation. He acknowledged that the situation was tricky and that the rebels had taken over military installations near the city of Rostov in southern Russia. Additionally, he declared, he will do all possible to defend Russia as a citizen. If necessary, decisive action will be taken. Nevertheless, Prigozhin differs from Putin’s other political adversaries who have voiced their disapproval of the government because he has a strong army at his back. Therefore, it’s crucial that we hold off on making decisions until after the passage of time, especially with regard to where to travel through this disturbance situation.
The author of this article is a Public Health Researcher, James P Grant School of Public Health, BRAC University, Email: [email protected]