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Prigozhin accuses Russian Defense Ministry of placing mines along Wagner exit routes from Bakhmut

by Kate Tsurkan June 2, 2023 11:12 PM 2 min read
Wagner mercenary group boss Yevgeny Prigozhin speaks in a video filmed in front of dozens of corpses, allegedly of Wagner fighters killed in Bakhmut, Donetsk Oblast, published on May 5, 2023. (Telegram)
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Wagner mercenary group founder Yevgeny Prigozhin accused "representatives of the Russian Defense Ministry" of placing mines along Wagner troops' exit routes from Bakhmut.

Responding to a question on the Telegram channel for his press service, Prigozhin said that 99% of Wagner troops had withdrawn from Bakhmut since claiming on May 20 that they had captured the city and begun handing over positions to the regular Russian army.

Kyiv has not formally acknowledged the fall of Bakhmut, but both official statements and reports from soldiers on the ground shared with the Kyiv Independent depict a similar scenario.

According to Prigozhin, there were explosive devices placed in around a dozen locations along Wagner troops' exit routes, including "hundreds" of anti-tank mines.

"We conducted investigative actions jointly with law enforcement agencies to document everything. Currently, investigations are underway," Prigozhin said.

Those who placed the explosive devices were "representatives of the Russian defense ministry."

"When asked why they did it, they pointed their fingers upward," Prigozhin added, suggesting that the orders came from higher-ranking officials.

There was "no need" to place the mines to hold back Ukrainian forces in those locations, according to Prigozhin, leading him to believe that they were intended as "public chastisement" for Wagner forces.

Prigozhin's years-long feud with the Russian Defense Ministry became even more public during the Battle of Bakhmut as he blamed them in numerous tirades for not supplying enough ammunition and failing to achieve the primary objectives of Russia's war in Ukraine.

Wagner a ‘shadow of what it once was’: Russia security expert on the rage of mercenary boss Prigozhin
After seeming to have calmed down over early spring, the internal conflict between Wagner mercenary group boss Yevgeny Prigozhin and the Russian Defense Ministry has escalated dramatically. In the early morning of May 5, Prigozhin recorded a video in front of what he claimed to be the bodies of doz…
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