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Head of Russia’s Wagner Group, Yevgeny Prigozhin, Likely Dead in Plane Crash: Emergency Officials

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Head of Russian Mercenary Group Wagner, Yevgeny Prigozhin, Likely Killed in Plane Crash

Officials have reported that Yevgeny Prigozhin, the leader of Russia’s Wagner Group of mercenaries, is believed to have died in a plane crash that occurred in Russia on Wednesday. The plane, carrying Prigozhin and nine others, went down in the Tver region, north of Moscow. The exact cause of the crash is currently under investigation.

Details of the Crash

The aircraft, which was traveling from Moscow to St Petersburg, was carrying three pilots and seven passengers. At first, it was unclear whether Prigozhin was among the passengers, but the Russian civil aviation regulator confirmed that he was on the passenger list. Flight tracking data revealed that a private jet registered under Wagner’s name, previously used by Prigozhin, took off from Moscow before disappearing from radar shortly after.

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Location of the Crash

The plane went down in a rural area without any nearby airports for emergency landing. The authorities are now conducting a thorough investigation to determine the exact circumstances leading to the crash.

Prigozhin’s Background and Recent Activities

Yevgeny Prigozhin, known for leading the private military force Wagner, had previously fought alongside the Russian regular army in Ukraine. In late June, he attempted an armed insurrection against the Russian military leadership but was soon overpowered. The Kremlin announced that Prigozhin would be exiled to Belarus, and his fighters were given the option to retire, join him in Belarus, or join the Russian army.

Following the failed insurrection, Wagner fighters established a camp in Belarus. However, media reports suggested that Prigozhin’s plane frequently traveled between Belarus and Russia. Just this week, Prigozhin released a recruitment video where he mentioned Wagner’s reconnaissance and research activities, emphasizing their aim to expand Russian influence globally, particularly in Africa.

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