Wagner group chief Yevgeny Prigozhin vowed Saturday to “go to the end” to topple the Russian military leadership and dethrone Vladimir Putin.
Prigozhin’s speech comes after Putin made a public speech on Saturday June 24, saying his forces will clamp down on Wagner forces for commiting treason.
Putin called armed rebellion mercenary chief Prighozin ‘betrayal,’ and promised to ‘defend the people’ and Russia.
“Everyone who took up arms against the army is a traitor. Will do everything to protect Russia,” Putin said while addressing the nation.
In response, Wagner PMC said in its Telegram channel, “Putin made the wrong choice. All the worse for him. Soon we will have a new president”
Reports say Wagner forces are just 6 hours away from Moscow even as they take control of military governing bodies in key Russian cities.
Wagner now controls both Rostov (population 1.1 million) and Voronezh (also population 1.1 million). Wagner is now approaching Krasnodar (1 million) and Volgograd (950k) without any resistance.
The UK, have now waded into the recent developments and released a statement .
“Over the coming hours, the loyalty of Russia’s security forces, and especially the Russian National Guard, will be key to how this crisis plays out. This represents the most significant challenge to the Russian state in recent times,” Britain’s defence ministry said in a regular intelligence update.