Fear of Wagner-revenge? Belarus reacts with drastic measure in mercenary camp

The leader of the Russian Wagner Group, Yevgeny Prigozhin, is dead. The man also known as “Putin’s cook”, who fought in the Ukraine war mainly in the Bakhmut region, died in a plane crash on August 23, 2023. The exact background has not yet been clarified.

It is also unclear how the Russian mercenary group Wagner will react to the death of its leader. Since co-founder Dmitri Utkin is also said to have been on board the crashed plane, the group is de facto leaderless, according to initial findings. Possible scenarios include integration into the Russian military, or possibly revenge actions. The latter may be feared in Belarus, where many of the Wagner mercenaries continue to reside after the uprising in Russia two months ago. According to information from Visegrad 24 via Network X, Belarusian authorities have shut down the Internet in the area of the Wagner Group’s main camp in the village of Tale. Further, Visegrad 24 writes: “It looks like Putin and Lukashenko are trying to prevent the Wagner group from communicating with each other and coordinating a quick response.”

This information could not be verified and should therefore be evaluated with reservations.

Image: Kremlin.ru, Lukashenko-Putin meeting (2022-09-26) 02, CC BY 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons (image size modified)

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