Just In: Wagner Boss, Yevgeny Prigozhin, Reportedly K!lled In Plane Crash In Russia

Just In: Wagner Boss, Yevgeny Prigozhin, Reportedly K!lled In Plane Crash In Russia

WAGNER CHIEF YEVGENY Prigozhin was amid the victims of a plane crash that has seen all 10 people who were on board killed, Russian agencies have reported. 

Prigozhin’s fate has been the subject of intense speculation ever since he mounted a short-lived mutiny against Russia’s military leadership in late June.

A private plane crashed in Moscow’s Tver region, killing all 10 people on board, the Russian emergency services said this evening.

“A private Embraer Legacy aircraft travelling from Moscow to Saint Petersburg crashed near the village of Kuzhenkino in the Tver Region,” Russia’s ministry for emergency situation said on Telegram.

There were 10 people on board, including 3 crew members. According to preliminary information, all those on board died.”

Russian state-run news agencies said that Yevgeny Prigozhin, the head of the Wagner group that led a mutiny against Russia’s army in June, was on the list of passengers of a plane that crashed.

“The plane that crashed in the Tver Region listed Yevgeny Prigozhin among its passengers, (Russia’s aviation agency) Rosaviatsia said,” TASS news agency reported, with RIA Novosti and Interfax issuing similar reports.

RIA Novosti reported, citing emergency officials, that eight bodies were found at the site of the crash.

Flight tracking data reviewed by The Associated Press showed a private jet registered to Wagner that Prigozhin had used previously took off from Moscow on Wednesday evening and its transponder signal disappeared minutes later.

The signal was lost in a rural region with no nearby airfields where the jet could have landed safely.

In an image posted by a pro-Wagner social media account showing burning wreckage, a partial tail number matching a private jet belonging to the company could be seen.

The colour and placement of the number on the engine of the crashed plane matches other photos of the Wagner jet examined by The AP.

The possible death Prigozhin in the plane crash would not be a surprise given his falling out with Russian President Vladimir Putin, a senior White House official said this evening. 

“We have seen the reports” of the crash, National Security Council spokeswoman Adrienne Watson said in a statement.

“If confirmed, no one should be surprised,” she said.

This week Prigozhin posted his first recruitment video since the mutiny, saying that Wagner is conducting reconnaissance and search activities, and “making Russia even greater on all continents, and Africa even more free”.

Prigozhin, whose private military force Wagner fought alongside Russia’s regular army in Ukraine, mounted a short-lived armed mutiny against Russia’s military leadership in late June.

The Kremlin said he would be exiled to Belarus, and his fighters would either retire, follow him there, or join the Russian military.

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