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High-profile Russian propagandist killed in explosion in St Petersburg cafe
An explosion in a cafe in central St. Petersburg killed Russian propagandist and war correspondent Vladlen Tatarsky and injured 25 other people on April 2, Russian media reported.
Russia's Interior Ministry confirmed Tatarsky's death, stating that the causes of the explosion are under investigation.
The cafe reportedly once belonged to Yevgeny Prigozhin, the leader of notorious Russian private military organization the Wagner Group, which continues to play a key role in Russia's war against Ukraine.
A video posted to Telegram showed a large detonation going off on the first floor of a large building in St. Petersburg, where Tatarsky was reportedly hosting an event for followers of his coverage of the war.
According to unconfirmed reports on Telegram channels, the explosive was concealed in a trophy that Tatarsky was given at the event.
Russian outlet Fontanka reported that according to people in attendance, the explosion happened five minutes after a female visitor handed Tatarsky the trophy, thought to contain several hundred grams of explosive material.
Tatarsky, who was born Maksim Fomin in the now-occupied parts of Donetsk Oblast in Ukraine, was one of the most well-known "independent" propaganda correspondents, consistently agitating for the further conquering of Ukrainian territory.
The military blogger's Telegram channel, where he posted news, analysis, video and photo material from the front lines has over half a million followers.
Tatarsky reportedly served time in prison in Ukraine since 2011 but managed to join the Russian armed forces during the beginning of Russia's war in 2014.