Yevgeny Prigozhin would go to Belarus, says Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov
The criminal case against head of Wagner paramilitary group Yevgeny Prigozhin will be dropped and he will go to Belarus, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Saturday.
The guarantee of Prigozhin’s departure to Belarus is the word of Russian President Vladimir Putin, Peskov underlined.
The authorities will not persecute Wagner members who took part in the rebellion, given their front-line merits, he said, adding that Wagner fighters who did not participate in the armed rebellion can sign contracts with the Russian Defense Ministry.
Moscow highly appreciates Lukashenko’s mediation efforts, said Peskov, stressing that “the special military operation” in Ukraine will continue.
All tanks, heavy equipment, and fighters of Wagner left the territory near the headquarters of the Southern Military District, according to Russian state media reports.
On Friday, Wagner accused Russian forces of attacking its fighters, and subsequently crossed from Ukraine into the Russian city of Rostov-on-Don.
In response, the Federal Security Service initiated a criminal case against them for armed rebellion. Putin labeled Wagner’s uprising as an act of “treason.”
The group’s leader Yevgeny Prigozhin said his fighters would proceed to Moscow, prompting the Kremlin to enhance security measures across various regions of the country.
Prigozhin later claimed his fighters decided to turn back to avoid bloodshed when they were about 200 kilometers (124 miles) from the Russian capital Moscow, while Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko claimed he held talks with the Wagner head with Putin’s accord, and that Prigozhin accepted a de-escalation deal.