Information about the arrest of Sergei Surovkin comes from independent sources Moscow Times. The newspaper spoke to two sources in the Russian Defense Ministry.
The fact that Surovikin must have known about the Wagner Group’s insurrection plans raises questions about how much support Wagner’s leader Prigozhin had when he set a course for Moscow with his army of mercenaries. The politicians the New York Times spoke to tell the paper are now trying to find out if Sergei Surovikin, nicknamed “General Armageddon,” was involved in planning the Wagner Group’s business.
According to New York Times sources, there are also indications that other Russian generals may have supported Prigozhin’s attempt to forcibly replace command of the Russian army. Current and former US elected officials tell the newspaper that Prigozhin would not have launched his rebellion if he did not believe others in positions of power would support him.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov downplayed the New York Times report on Wednesday, but did not deny it outright.
– There will be many different speculations, gossip, etc. around these events. And I think that’s an example, he says, according to the paper.
At the same time, the Russian opposition reported File Center That Sergei Surovikin has been an honorary member of Wagner since 2017. In addition to the high-ranking general, more than 30 Russian generals and officials will be honorary members of Prigozhin’s paramilitary organization, they wrote.
The diversion in the Prigozhin camp
From the Russian media in exile Important stories Information comes that Surovikin was the first of the high-ranking generals to urge Prigozhin to cancel the march on Moscow and turn around.
He writes that the uprising’s end so quickly may be due to plans leaked from Prigozhin’s own camp. Wall Street Journal. The newspaper wrote that the original plan should have been to arrest Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu and Chief of the General Staff Valery Gerasimov, but the FSB found out about it two days before it was implemented.
This was also confirmed by the commander of the Russian National Guard, General Viktor Zolotov, in interviews with Russian media.
– Information about preparations for the uprising, which will begin between June 22 and 25, was leaked from Prigozhin’s camp, he said.
I had to improvise
After that, Prigozhin had to improvise and act earlier than he intended. Apparently, Wagner’s group marched almost unhindered towards Moscow. You would have arrived in the capital too if you had arrived, Russian Viktor Zolotov admits Kommersant.
– They entered, but they were not going to take Moscow, he says.
The investigation of the Security Service into Prigozhin was closed. What will happen to Sergey Surovikin is still not clear. So far Vladimir Putin seems to be putting all the blame on Yevgeny Prigozhin, but that could change if it turns out he had the help of Surovikin or others.
– Putin is unwilling to exchange people. But Alexander Paunov, a senior fellow at the Carnegie Russia Eurasia Center, told the New York Times that if the intelligence services placed documents on Putin’s desk that pointed to Surovikin, that could change.
Also read: The Wagner Group’s move to Belarus is worrying neighboring countries
Also read: Putin reviews money flows to Prigozhin
Also read: Putin makes an impromptu speech – praising the troops
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