Wagner Group boss Yevgeny Prigozhin applauds homicide of former fighter



CNN
 — 

Russian oligarch Yevgeny Prigozhin, whose Wagner Group is closely concerned within the combating in Ukraine, has applauded a video through which a former member of the group is brutally murdered.

The video surfaced over the weekend on the Gray Zone Telegram channel, which often showcases the actions of mercenary fighters of the Wagner Group, which is accused of conflict crimes in Africa, Syria and Ukraine.

It confirmed a member of the group who had abandoned and gone over to the Ukrainian aspect being murdered with a sledgehammer. The person is called (and names himself within the video) as Yevgeny Nuzhin.

Within the video, Nuzhin says: “On the 4th of September I carried out my plan by switching to fight alongside Ukrainian troops. On the 11th of November, I was on a street in Kyiv when someone hit me on the head and I lost consciousness.”

He provides: “I woke up in this cellar, where I was told that I will be judged.”

Inside seconds, he’s killed, struck no less than as soon as with a sledgehammer.

Prigozhin was requested on his Telegram channel concerning the killing. With out straight acknowledging that Wagner fighters had carried out the homicide, he stated: “Nuzhin betrayed his people, betrayed his comrades, betrayed them consciously. He was not taken prisoner, nor did he surrender. Rather, he planned his escape. Nuzhin is a traitor.”

“Russian people can smell betrayal – it’s genetic. Hence the comments on social networks,” stated Prigozhin, referring to some constructive responses to the killing.

In a separate Telegram put up Prigozhin referred to as the video “an excellent director’s work.”

“I prefer to watch this story in the theatre. As for the executed, in this show it is clear that he did not find happiness in Ukraine, but instead met with unkind, although fair people. It seems to me that this film is called “The dog receives the dog’s death.”“

Textual content on the Grey Zone channel accompanying the video stated that “the sledgehammer and traitors have a close relationship for the ‘orchestra’ [ie Wagner]. And now, suddenly disappearing from the investigation in Kyiv, the traitor received the traditional primordial Wagnerian punishment.”

In early September, Nuzhin was interviewed by Ukrainian journalist Yuriy Butusov, and spoke about surrendering to Ukrainian forces and his readiness to battle on the aspect of Kyiv.

Nuzhin additionally spoke of how the Wagner group recruits prisoners to battle in Ukraine in alternate for the promise of a full pardon in Russia.

In early October, Nuzhin gave one other interview to Ukrainian journalist Ramina Eskhakzai expressing his help for Ukraine and revealing extra particulars about how the Wagner group operates.

Within the interview, Nuzhin confirmed he had spent 23 years in jail in Nizhny Novgorod for homicide. He was as a consequence of be launched in 2027 however selected to hitch the Wagner group to battle in Ukraine.

He additionally instructed Eskhakzai: “My parents live in the western Ukraine. How can you wage war with your own family? ”

On Sunday, Vladimir Osechkin, head of Gulagu.web, a prisoner advocacy group, stated on his weblog that he had interviewed the sons of Nuzhin, who confirmed it was their father within the video.

It’s nonetheless unclear how Nuzhin ended up in captivity.

CNN has reached out to the Ukrainian authorities, asking whether or not Nuzhin was despatched again to Russian-held territory in return for the liberation of Ukrainian prisoners of conflict, or whether or not he was kidnapped with out their information.

On Friday, the top of the Workplace of the President of Ukraine, Andriy Yermak, stated in an announcement that 45 Ukrainian troopers had returned from captivity in one other spherical of prisoner exchanges.

Anastasia Kashevarova, a former adviser to the top of the Russian State Duma Vyacheslav Volodin, stated the alternate included fighters from the Wagner firm, however she didn’t establish them.

Requested concerning the video Monday, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov stated: “We have no comment. We don’t know what it is, how true it is. This is not our business.”

Prigozhin is reportedly certainly one of Putin’s trusted confidants – so shut that the Russian press dubbed him the “chef” to the Russian President after he started catering occasions for the Kremlin.

In September, he admitted to founding the Wagner Group after years of denying involvement with the outfit.