chief spoke to Moscow about Wagner revolt – WSJ

29 chief spoke to Moscow about Wagner revolt – WSJ

William Burns reportedly reassured his Russian counterpart that the US performed no function within the aborted rebel

CIA Director William Burns reached out to Russian International Intelligence Service (SVR) head Sergey Naryshkin to state that the US “wasn’t concerned” in Wagner Group chief Evgeny Prigozhin’s march on Moscow final weekend, the Wall Road Journal has reported.

Burns spoke to Naryshkin by cellphone shortly after Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko brokered a deal whereby Prigozhin would go away for Belarus in change for immunity from prosecution, the newspaper reported on Friday.

An nameless US official summed up the message relayed by the CIA chief as “the US wasn’t concerned. That is an inside Russian matter.”

Earlier within the week, US President Joe Biden informed reporters that his administration “made clear that we weren’t concerned. We had nothing to do with it. This was a part of a battle throughout the Russian system.” Nevertheless, the cellphone name between Burns and Naryshkin “is believed to be the highest-level contact between the 2 governments because the tried mutiny,” the Wall Road Journal defined.

The rebel started on June 23, when Prigozhin accused the Russian navy of launching a lethal missile strike on one of many group’s discipline camps. The Russian Protection Ministry denied the allegation, however Prigozhin vowed to march to Moscow and demand “justice” regardless. Wagner troops occupied components of the southern Russian metropolis of Rostov-on-Don the next day, however the journey to Moscow was halted later that night time when Lukashenko introduced {that a} deal had been reached.

Russian President Vladimir Putin denounced Prigozhin’s actions as “a betrayal of our folks,” and touted the deal as the most suitable choice to avert a bloody civil conflict. Below the settlement, Wagner troops might be built-in into the common Russian navy, whereas the personal navy firm will reportedly hand over its tanks, anti-aircraft techniques, and different heavy weaponry.

Earlier than the deal was introduced, Western politicians and media retailers overtly celebrated what they noticed as a menace to Putin’s rule. Amid subsequent experiences claiming that Western intelligence companies knew concerning the deliberate revolt prematurely, Nationwide Guard of Russia commander Viktor Zolotov declared this week that the revolt “was impressed by Western particular companies, as a result of, as they stated, they knew about it a number of weeks forward of time.”

Zolotov claimed that “Prigozhin’s camp” had been intentionally leaking “targeted” details about a doable mutiny coming someday between final Thursday and Sunday. He additional prompt that Western brokers could have been immediately concerned in conducting the operation.

The Kremlin has not endorsed Zolotov’s claims. Russian International Minister Sergey Lavrov stated on Thursday that Russia has all the time emerged stronger from such challenges, describing the mutiny as “nothing greater than bother.”

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