Russian President Vladimir Putin confirmed that he suggested that Wagner elements serve under the command of another leader of this armed group, but its leader Yevgeny Prigozhin rejected this offer, after his short rebellion.
In an interview with Russian Kommersant newspaper, Russian President Vladimir Putin gave details of his June 29 meeting in the Kremlin with Prigozhin and the leaders of the Wagner Group.
“The Wagner operatives could have gathered in one place and continued to serve,” Putin said.
Putin noted would have changed for them.
They would have been placed under the command of someone who would be their de facto leader during that period.
According to details, the person suggested by Putin is a Wagner official with the nickname “Sidoy” (the gray haired one) who has actually led Wagner fighters on the Ukrainian front in the last sixteen months.
“Many of Wagner commanders nodded their heads approvingly when I suggested this, But Yevgeny Prigozhin, who was sitting in front of me, didn’t see this and said after listening; Both young people don’t agree with this solution”.
Putin confirmed that he discussed during this meeting on June 29 possible solutions so that the Wagner Group would continue to fight on behalf of Russia and gave his reading of the events of June 24.
Putin talked about the absence of an official legal status for the Wagner Group in Russia, where the law doesn’t allow the establishment of private armed groups.
Putin assured that the Wagner group exists, but it has no legal existence.
“This is another issue related to legitimizing, its existence… This is an issue that should be discussed in the State Duma and within the government”.
Wagner’s rebellion shook the pillars of Russian power in the midst of the conflict in Ukraine.
For several hours, Wagner fighters took control a Russian army headquarters in Rostov in the southwest of the country and advanced hundreds of kilometers towards Moscow.
The rebellion ended on the evening of June 24 with an agreement stipulating that Prigozhin would move to Belarus, while his fighters would have the right to join the ranks of the Russian army or move to civilian life.