Yevgeny Prigozhin’s Wagner radical of mercenaries has captured a Russian commander, arsenic the notorious person further escalates his feud with the regular army.
In a video posted connected Prigozhin’s societal media channels connected Monday evening, Lt Col Roman Venevitin, the commandant of Russia’s 72nd Brigade, tells an interrogator that, portion drunk, helium had ordered his troops to occurrence connected a Wagner convoy.
In the footage, which resembled clips of captive of warfare soldiers, Venevitin said helium acted due to the fact that of his “personal dislike” for Wagner and past apologised.
Last week, Prigozhin accused the Russian service of trying to stroke up his men arsenic they were pulling backmost from the eastbound Ukrainian municipality of Bakhmut.
The businessman, who is champion known arsenic “Putin’s chef” due to the fact that of his catering contracts with the Kremlin, besides claimed his men had discovered explosives which helium said were planted connected intent by defence ministry officials.
The Russian ministry of defence has yet to remark connected the footage.
Two adjacent household members of Venevitin confirmed to the Guardian that the antheral filmed successful the video was their relative.
Prigozhin, who has been arguing with apical subject officials for months, announced past week that his troops had mostly pulled backmost from Bakhmut, astir of which they captured past period aft taking dense casualties. The metropolis is present believed to beryllium controlled by the regular Russian forces.
The latest incidental again exposes the rifts successful Moscow’s warfare machine. It besides comes amid an summation successful fighting on the frontlines successful the Donetsk and Zaporizhzhia regions, starring to speculation that Kyiv has launched its much-anticipated counteroffensive.
Some nationalist pro-war commentators said Wagner’s apprehension of a elder Russian worker attested to Prigozhin’s increasing power wrong the Kremlin.
“Yevgeny Prigozhin, whose subordinates posted a video successful which they mock a elder serviceman and an full brigade commandant … is allowed to bash immoderate helium wants. He is considered arsenic the highest caste!” Igor Strelkov, a retired Russian peculiar operations serviceman and fashionable subject blogger, wrote connected his Telegram channel.
Prigozhin’s power grew arsenic his troops gradually captured Bakhmut successful caller months, delivering Moscow the archetypal tangible subject triumph since past summer.
Since the commencement of the war, Prigozhin has emerged arsenic 1 of the astir disposable powerfulness players, often utilizing societal media to present scorching tirades against the defence ministry.
His turbulent rise, however, has angered immoderate elements of the Russian elite.
Last week, Prigozhin received uncommon nationalist disapproval erstwhile 2 adjacent allies of the Chechen leader, Ramzan Kadyrov, described him arsenic a “hysterical blogger” who undermined Russia’s warfare effort.