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Russian TV host: Wagner made close to $10 billion from state contracts

by The Kyiv Independent news desk July 2, 2023 2:36 PM 1 min read
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Russian TV show host Dmitriy Kiselev claimed that the Kremlin has spent 858 billion rubles ($9.8 billion at current rates) on funding Yevgeny Prigozhin's Wagner mercenary group.

According to Kiselev, a further 845 billion rubles on contracts to other companies run by Prigozhin's holding Concord Group, bring the total to almost $20 billion, though the real figure is less given the fall of the ruble since the full-scale invasion of Ukraine.

The claim likely refers to the sum total of all federal contracts with these companies. Wagner Group was created in 2013.    

Vladimir Putin claimed that Russia paid Wagner around $1 billion from May 22 through May 23, a rare admission that might make prosecuting the Russian dictator for war crimes easier, the Guardian reported.

Prigozhin got his start with federal catering contracts, earning him the moniker of "Putin's chef". By having Putin's ear, his companies have grown until they supplied and maintained just about the entire armed forces.

Wagner Group was Russia's top mercenary company, which served state interests and was a key force in Russia's war against Ukraine, until a recent mutiny by Prigozhin and the unit.

This Week in Ukraine Ep. 14 – Wagner’s mutiny attempt in Russia, and its consequences
Episode #14 of our weekly video podcast “This Week in Ukraine” is dedicated to Wagner mercenary group’s failed attempt to take on the Russian military establishment and its consequences. Host Anastasiia Lapatina is joined by the Kyiv Independent’s reporter Francis Farrell. Listen to the audio vers…
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