Russia: Wagner Boss Accuses General Staff of 'Treason' | War in Ukraine
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The fighting is particularly intense near Bakhmout, in the Donetsk region, partly occupied by paramilitary troops of the Wagner group.
The boss of the Russian paramilitary group Wagner on Tuesday accused his country's general staff of “treason” for refusing, according to him, to provide equipment to his mercenaries, on the front line in the east of the east. ;Ukraine.
These statements by businessman Yevgeny Prigojine mark an escalation in the tensions between his Wagner group and the Russian army, in field competition in Ukraine.
Tensions have become increasingly visible in recent weeks as Russian forces attempt to seize the city of Bakhmout, with the army and Wagner claiming separate claims for advances contradicting each other. sometimes.
The Chief of Staff and the Minister of Defense distribute orders at all times asking not only not to give ammunition to the paramilitary group Wagner, but also not to help him with air travel, Mr. Prigojine scolded in a voice recording published by his press service on Telegram.
“There is a frontal opposition, which is nothing less than an attempt to destroy Wagner. It can be likened to a betrayal of the fatherland, as Wagner fights for Bakhmout, suffering hundreds of casualties every day.
— Yevgeny Prigozhin, leader of the Russian paramilitary group Wagner
While Mr. Prigozhin has repeatedly criticized the Russian high command in the past, this attack ad hominemagainst Chief of Staff Valery Gerasimov and Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu, two of President Vladimir Putin's main power figures, is clearly an escalation.
The Russian Ministry of Defense responded in the evening with a statement detailing the number of ammunition supplied to volunteer assault squadrons, the name the military appears to use to refer to Wagner's men.
< p class="e-p">All requests for ammunition for the assault units are met as soon as possible, assured the ministry, promising new deliveries on Saturday and denouncing as absolutely false the reports of a lack in this area.< /p>
The Ministry once again praised the courage and selflessness of Russian volunteers in combat and denounced the attempts to divide, which are counterproductive and only play into favor of the enemy.
These tensions also illustrate the difficulties encountered by the Russian forces three days before the anniversary of the launch of the offensive against the #x27;Ukraine, supposed to end quickly with the capture of Kiev and now bogged down.
Wagner, who recruited thousands of prisoners to fight in Ukraine, leads the x27;assault on Bakhmout since the summer and recently conquered a series of nearby localities in an attempt to #x27;surround the city.
On Tuesday, Mr. Prigojine accused the high command of even banning the delivery to Wagner fighters of shovels that allow them to dig pits. trenches.