Live blog: Russia officially dropping charges against Wagner, Prigozhin- TRT WORLD


Live blog: Russia officially dropping charges against Wagner, Prigozhin- TRT WORLD

Tuesday, June 27, 2023

Russia’s FSB security services has announced that it was dropping a case against fighters of the Wagner mercenary group accused of staging an armed mutiny to topple the country’s military leadership.

“The criminal case open over the armed uprising by the private military company Wagner has been closed,” the FSB said in a statement carried by Russian news agencies.

Over the weekend, the Kremlin pledged not to prosecute Prigozhin and his fighters after he stopped the revolt on Saturday, even though President Vladimir Putin had branded them as traitors.

Legally, the charge of mounting an armed mutiny in Russia carries a punishment of up to 20 years in prison.

More updates ?

0843 GMT — Russia executed 77 civilian detainees in Ukraine: UN

Russia has executed 77 civilians being held in arbitrary detention in Ukraine, according to a United Nations report released today.

“We documented the summary execution of 77 civilians while they were arbitrarily detained by the Russian Federation,” Matilda Bogner, head of the UN Human Rights Monitoring Mission in Ukraine, told a press briefing in Geneva.

0830 GMT — Israel summons Ukraine envoy over pro-Russia accusation

The Israeli foreign ministry has said it was summoning the Ukrainian ambassador for a “clarification,” after the Ukrainian embassy accused “the current Israeli government” of “a clear pro-Russian position”. Israel has adopted a cautious approach since Russian forces invaded Ukraine in February last year, seeking to maintain neutrality between the warring sides. It has sent humanitarian aid to Ukraine during the conflict but stopped short of delivering weapons. On Sunday, the Ukrainian embassy charged that “the current Israeli government” had “opted for a path of close cooperation with the Russian Federation”.

0827 GMT — Russia says preparing transfer of Wagner hardware to army

Russia is preparing to take over military hardware belonging to the Wagner mercenary group, which staged a rebellion over the weekend, to Moscow’s regular army.

“Preparations are underway for the transfer of heavy military equipment from the private military company Wagner to units of the Russian armed forces,” the defence ministry said in a statement online.

0800 GMT — Belarus leader says put army at ready during Russia’s Wagner mutiny

Belarusian leader Alexander Lukashenko announced Tuesday that he had ordered his army to be “combat ready” during an uprising in neighbouring Russia led by Wagner mercenary head Yevgeny Prigozhin.

“I gave all the orders to bring the army to full combat readiness,” Lukashenko said in comments distributed by state media, after the long-serving statesman was credited with negotiating an end to Wagner’s short-lived uprising.

0100 GMT — Ukraine making advances in all frontline sectors — Zelenskyy

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has said Ukraine’s military had made advances in all sectors of the front line.

“Today in all sectors, our soldiers made advances. It is a happy day,” Zelenskyy said in his nightly video address, delivered from a train after visiting frontline positions.

“May I wish our boys more such days.”

2252 GMT — Ukraine making ‘steady tactical progress’: British defence chief

British Defense Secretary Ben Wallace told the House of Parliament that Ukraine is “making gradual but steady tactical progress” with major offensive operations in the south and east of the country.

“As part of their summer campaign to reclaim illegally-occupied territory, Ukraine has already recaptured approximately 300 square kilometres – that’s more territory than Russia seized in its winter offensive,” said Wallace.

He said Russia had made its own “significant effort to launch an attack” in the Luhansk oblast, noting: “Russia has had some small gains, but Ukrainian forces have prevented a breakthrough.

“In Donetsk oblast, Ukraine has gained impetus in its assaults around Bakhmut; in multiple brigade operations, Ukrainian forces have made progress on the town’s north and southern flanks,” he added.

2119 GMT — Trudeau takes wait-and-see approach on aborted Russian mutiny

The aborted mutiny in Russia is an internal issue for Moscow and speculation over it could prove counter-productive, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has said, joining Western allies in taking a wait-and-see approach to Wagner revolt Russia.

“Everyone has a lot of questions about what this actually means, but we don’t yet have a lot of answers and too much speculation right now I think could probably be extremely counterproductive,” Trudeau told reporters in Vestmannaeyjar, Iceland, after meeting leaders of Nordic countries.

Trudeau said he had serious conversations about the possible implications of Russia’s internal challenges in meetings with his Nordic counterparts.

2111 GMT — US to send $500M in weapons, military aid to Ukraine: officials

The Pentagon will announce it is sending up to $500 million in military aid to Ukraine, including more than 50 heavily armoured vehicles and an infusion of missiles for air defence systems, US officials have said.

The aid is aimed at bolstering Ukraine’s counter-offensive, which has been moving slowly in its early stages. It wasn’t clear if Ukrainian forces will be able to take advantage of the disarray in the Russian ranks, in the aftermath of the short-lived rebellion by Yevgeny Prigozhin and the Wagner mercenary group that he has controlled.

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