The video surfaced over the weekend on the Gray Zone Telegram channel, which ceaselessly showcases the actions of mercenary fighters of the Wagner Group, which is accused of warfare 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 known as (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 battle alongside Ukrainian troops. On the eleventh of November, I used to be on a road in Kyiv when somebody hit me on the pinnacle and I misplaced consciousness.”
Inside seconds, he’s killed, struck a minimum of as soon as with a sledgehammer.
Prigozhin was requested on his Telegram channel in regards to the killing. With out immediately acknowledging that Wagner fighters had carried out the homicide, he stated: “Nuzhin betrayed his folks, betrayed his comrades, betrayed them consciously. He was not taken prisoner, nor did he give up. Somewhat, he deliberate his escape. Nuzhin is a traitor.”
“Russian folks can odor betrayal — it is genetic. Therefore the feedback on social networks,” stated Prigozhin, referring to some optimistic responses to the killing.
In a separate Telegram publish Prigozhin known as the video “a wonderful director’s work.”
“I desire to observe this story within the theatre. As for the executed, on this present it’s clear that he didn’t discover happiness in Ukraine, however as a substitute met with unkind, though honest folks. It appears to me that this movie is known as “The canine receives the canine’s dying.””
Textual content on the Grey Zone channel accompanying the video stated that “the sledgehammer and traitors have a detailed relationship for the ‘orchestra’ [ie Wagner]. And now, all of the sudden disappearing from the investigation in Kyiv, the traitor obtained the normal primordial Wagnerian punishment.”
‘How will you wage warfare with your personal household?’
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 change for the promise of a full pardon in Russia.
In early October, Nuzhin gave one other interview to Ukrainian journalist Ramina Eskhakzai expressing his assist 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 advised Eskhakzai: “My mother and father dwell within the western Ukraine. How will you wage warfare with your personal household? ”
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 is 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 warfare, or whether or not he was kidnapped with out their information.
On Friday, the pinnacle 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 pinnacle of the Russian State Duma Vyacheslav Volodin, stated the change included fighters from the Wagner firm, however she didn’t establish them.
Requested in regards to the video Monday, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov stated: “We have now no remark. We do not know what it’s, how true it’s. This isn’t our enterprise.”
Prigozhin is reportedly one in every 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.
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