Prigozhin charged with armed mutiny, to face up to 20 years in prison
The Russian Defense Ministry called the reports on strikes at Wagner PMC units false
MOSCOW, June 24. /TASS/. A criminal case over charges of organization of armed mutiny was initiated against Wagner PMC founder Yevgeny Prigozhin after his Telegram channel published his claims that the Russian Defense Ministry hit PMC units with airstrikes and his calls for supporters to rise against the national government.
The Defense Ministry debunked claims of airstrikes at Wagner PMC units. Kremlin Spokesman stated that President Vladimir Putin was informed about the situation regarding Prigozhin, adding that all necessary measures are being taken.
The Federal Security Service (FSB) press office said that the criminal was initiated due to the seriousness of the situation and the threat of escalation in Russia; it also called on PMC fighters not to comply with Prigozhin’s orders and to detain him.
Here are key facts about the situation regarding Prigozhin.
Defense Ministry debunks claims
The Russian Defense Ministry called the reports on strikes at Wagner PMC units false.
The Ministry added that Russian forces continue to carry out missions in the special military operation area. Later, the Ministry announced that the Kiev regime took advantage of Prigozhin’s provocation and is concentrating forces of 35th and 36th Marine Brigades on the Bakhmut direction for offensive action.
Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov said that President Vladimir Putin was informed about the situation around Prigozhin and “necessary measures are being taken.”
According to the spokesman, all Russian security agencies report to Putin about measures being taken around the clock.
The National Antiterrorism Committee announced that Prigozhin’s statements became grounds for initiation of the criminal case over charges of calls for an armed mutiny; the Committee demanded to immediately stop illegal actions.
Later, the Prosecutor General’s Office said that the criminal case was initiated legitimately and was justified. The Office promised to provide legal assessment to Prigozhin’s actions. The Wagner PMC founder may face between 12 and 20 years in prison.
‘Stab in the back’
Prigozhin’s statements effectively constitute calls for beginning of and armed civil conflict, Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) press office said.
“Prigozhin’s statements and actions effectively constitute calls for an armed civil conflict on Russian territory and a stab in the back of Russian servicemen fighting with pro-Nazi Ukrainian forces,” the press office said.
To resolve problems peacefully
Russia’s Deputy Commander of Russian joint forces in the special military operation area Sergey Surovikin called on the Wagner PMC to comply with President Vladimir Putin’s order and to resolve all issues peacefully.
“I urge you to stop. The enemy is waiting for our internal political situation to escalate. We must not play in enemy’s favor in this difficult time. Before it is too late, it is necessary to submit to the will and order to the nationally elected president of the Russian Federation, to stop the convoys, to take them back to their permanent deployment and concentration locations, and to only resolve all issues peacefully,” he said.
Special TV reports
Russia’s Channel 1 aired two special reports. The first said that the video about the “strike” on Wagner PMC positions is fake, proven by the absence of other video footage, and the fact that audio files on Prigozhin’s Telegram channel were recorded simultaneously and were published as scheduled messages. In addition, the report announced the initiation of the criminal case against Prigozhin.
The second special report also included Surovikin’s address.
Situation in Moscow and the regions
Moscow’s critical facilities have been put under reinforced protection, security measures in the capital have been increased, a source in law enforcement agencies told TASS. According to the source, Russian National Guard special units were put on full alert.
Car traffic has been blocked on Russia’s M-4 highway past Rostov-on-Don towards Aksay, according to TASS reported at the scene. All cars moving from Rostov-on-Don towards Aksay are being redirected back in the city, and police checkpoints have been reinforced.
Checkpoints have been established near the Southern Military District headquarters in Rostov-on-Don, with military and law enforcement upholding the public order. Military checkpoints have been established on streets adjacent to the headquarters, with numerous police cars; an armored personnel carrier was spotted near the headquarters building. The city’s central streets are being patrolled by police cars; aircraft was heard in air in Western parts of the city. No security agency has provided any official comments yet.
Meanwhile, the situation at the “Wagner PMC Center” building in St. Petersburg remains calm, there are no Russian National Guard employees or employees of other security services, according to a TASS reporter. Security detail on duty debunked reports of searches in the building.
Crimean authorities urged residents to only trust official information due to intensified activities of Ukraine’s Informational and Psychological Operation Center (TSIPsO).
US authorities watch the situation in Russia closely, CNN reported citing unnamed Administration representative. According to the report, US President Joe Biden was informed about the ongoing events.
According to CNN’s sources, Prigozhin’s statements are “more than his usual rhetoric.”.
What can I say other than we shall see? We’ve had many instances of “crises” with Putin since this Special Military Operation began. “Putin is rushing to the Kremlin” headlines have been put up many times with nothing coming of it other than more speeches and rhetoric.
However if the reports from Hal Turner and Russian Telegram accounts are true than this is for real and it is very dangerous. The Russian FSB are publicly asking the Wagner mercenaries to stand down and to arrest their leader or at least detain him. Allegedly the Russian border guards have let the Wagner mercs pass through their checkpoints in spite of being ordered to detain them. At this point no one (including Putin) really knows who’s in charge of different departments or where their allegiances lie. Stay tuned, more to come.
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