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CNN: US gathered detailed intelligence on Prigozhin's insurrection plans but kept it secret

by Dinara Khalilova June 27, 2023 9:39 AM 2 min read
A member of Wagner Group stands guard in Rostov-on-Don, on June 24, 2023. The group's Chief Yevgeny Prigozhin said his fighters control key military sites in the southern city of Rostov-on-Don. (Photo by STRINGER / AFP) (Photo by STRINGER/AFP via Getty Images)
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U.S. intelligence officials managed to obtain a detailed picture of Wagner boss Yevgeny Prigozhin's plans to launch an armed rebellion against the Russian government, including where and how he had planned to advance, CNN reported on June 27, citing sources familiar with the matter.

However, the intelligence was shared only with select allies, such as senior U.K. officials, and not at the broader NATO level, as unnamed sources told CNN.

The secrecy level was so high that even within the country, only top administration officials and several high-profile Congress members were briefed on the findings.

According to the publication, some NATO officials were disappointed with Washington's decision not to share the intelligence. But by doing otherwise, the U.S. could have risked compromising extremely sensitive sources and methods, CNN's sources explained.

Kyiv was also not informed about Prigozhin's plans in advance. According to the officials, cited by CNN, the main reason for that was Washington's fear that the conversations might be intercepted by adversaries.

U.S. President Joe Biden reportedly spent the days after the short-lived rebellion speaking with allies, including the leaders of France, Germany, the U.K., and Canada, as well as Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelensky.

According to CNN, Biden shared with them information the U.S. had about Wagner's uprising to make sure the leaders were aware of what exactly was known to the U.S. intelligence.

Wagner launched a "march for justice" against Russian military leaders on June 23 after a missile attack allegedly targeted Prigozhin's troops in Ukraine. He abruptly ended the rebellion in less than 24 hours following negotiations with Belarusian dictator Aleksandr Lukashenko.

Prigozhin is set to move to Belarus to avoid any charges by the Kremlin, while mercenaries who refuse to sign contracts with the Russian Defense Ministry will be prosecuted.

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