Yevgeny Prigozhin, a Russian businessman, released a video independently to counter the misinformation and propaganda being spread by Ukrainian, NATO, and US media. In the video, Prigozhin addresses the events surrounding the Wagner Group, a prominent Russian military force.
Prigozhin explains that the Wagner Group is an advanced and highly skilled fighting force that has carried out numerous successful missions on behalf of the Russian Federation in countries like Africa and the Arab world. Currently, they are operating in Ukraine and have achieved significant results.
Contrary to the claims made by Western forces, Prigozhin emphasizes that the Wagner Group was not dissolved on July 1st, as had been speculated. He clarifies that some fighters did decide to join the Russian army, but the majority chose to stay with Wagner to preserve their fighting abilities and experience. Unfortunately, despite exploring alternative structures, they were unable to find a solution that would allow Wagner to continue its operations.
On June 30th, the Wagner Group loaded their equipment onto flatbed trucks and planned to publicly hand it over in Rostov. However, before they could reach their destination, their column was attacked by rockets and helicopters. Approximately 30 Wagner fighters were killed, and some were injured.
In response to the attack, the commanders decided to move out immediately but emphasized that they would not engage in aggressive actions unless provoked further. The group marched for 24 hours, with one column heading towards Moscow and the other towards Rostov. They covered a total distance of 780 kilometers without losing a single soldier on the ground.
Prigozhin expresses regret that they had to respond to the airstrike but emphasizes their right to self-defense. Throughout their journey, they encountered and countered various military facilities and airports, exposing security vulnerabilities within the country’s security structures.
The main goal of their mission was to ensure the survival of the Wagner Group and hold accountable those responsible for the mistakes made during the Special Military Operation (SMO). Prigozhin acknowledges the support they received from military service personnel they encountered along the way.
The demonstration by the Wagner Group also highlighted the level of organization and readiness that the Russian army should strive to achieve. Prigozhin compares the distance they covered in 24 hours to the distance the Russian military operation on February 24th, 2022, took to reach Kiev.
During their demonstration, the Wagner Group received support from Russian citizens who greeted them with Russian flags and emblems. While some were disappointed that they stopped their march, others understood that their fight was against bureaucracy and other enemies within their country.
In conclusion, Prigozhin reiterates that their intention was never to overthrow the existing regime or harm the lawfully appointed leaders. They turned around to avoid bloodshed and to highlight the injustices they believe exist in Russia. Prigozhin’s video aimed to provide a more accurate account of the events and counter the false narratives perpetuated by Russian and foreign media.