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National Resistance Center: Wagner fighters leave Belarus due to low pay

by Abbey Fenbert August 20, 2023 3:25 AM 1 min read
A Belarusian soldier walks through a newly-built camp on a site previously used by the Belarusian army that could potentially accommodate up to 5,000 Wagner troops, on July 07, 2023. (Photo by Adam Berry/Getty Images)
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Over a thousand Wagner Group mercenaries have departed Belarus because they are unhappy with their pay, the National Restistance Center reported on Aug. 19.

Sources in Belarus told the Center that the number of Wagner fighters had fallen from 5,800 to 4,400.

According to the Center's report, "lack of funding from Russia" is the cause. Dissatisfied with their earnings, Wagner mercenaries stationed in Belarus have signed contracts to fight in African nations or left for vacation with no intention of returning.

The Belarusian government established a partnership with the Wagner Group in July, when the private military company relocated to Belarus in the aftermath of Yevgeny Prigozhin's June rebellion. Wagner members have since been training Belarusian soldiers on combat techniques.

Given the low payment for Wagner instructors, "most of them do not plan to stay in the country for a long time," the Center said.

While Wagner troops appear to have withdrawn from Ukraine, their presence in Belarus has given rise to tensions in the region. Poland, Lithuania, and Latvia have threatened to close their borders to Belarus due to Wagner activity along the border.

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Editor’s note: Due to security concerns, the Kyiv Independent isn’t publishing the real name or the photo of the police officer at the center of this story. He is identified in the story as Oleksandr. KUPIANSK, Kharkiv Oblast – Kupiansk police officer Oleksandr doesn’t like remembering the time
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