By Chris King • 23 March 2023 • 19:49
Image of Wagner PMC boss Yevgeny Prighozin.
Credit: Telegram Concorde press agency
Yevgeny Prigozhin, the founder and head of the notorious Wagner PMC, announced today, Thursday, March 23, that he could possibly withdraw his forces from the Bakhmut region of Ukraine. This threat comes after serious delays – thought by many to be deliberate – by Moscow in shipping ammunition and more troops to the front lines, according to Bloomberg.
The leader of the mercenary army has been visibly upset in recent weeks over the tardiness of military bosses in the Kremlin. He has even been prohibited from continuing with his recruitment policy of taking convicts from Russian prisons.
The military commanders seem to have managed to sow doubts in Putin about Wagner’s alleged military supremacy after the Russian president transferred to the Ministry of Defense the exclusivity of being able to recruit among the country’s prisons. His army is believed to have suffered massive losses of up to 45 per cent of its total since the conflict in Ukraine began.
Since the start of the invasion of Ukraine, Prigozhin had unlimited access to Russian prisons to recruit prisoners who were willing to go to war in exchange for their release if they survived at least six months. However, many of them did not have the necessary military preparation to undertake an undertaking of this magnitude.
According to the British Intelligence service, half of the 40,000 prisoners who were recruited have died. Last week, Wagner announced a recruitment campaign in sports centres in almost 50 Russian cities, with which they hope to register some 30,000 new volunteers.
Recently, Prighozin accused the Russian military high command of being ‘traitors’ because they allegedly refused to listen to his requests. This appears to have finally paid its toll on the entrepreneur, who said that he would take his men back to Africa and resume their activities there.
According to sources consulted by Bloomberg, Wagner has opened several fronts on the continent in collaboration with the authorities of some African countries.
Posting on his official Telegram channel today, Colonel General Oleksandr Syrskyi, the commander of the Ukrainian land forces suggested that the Wagner forces were indeed pulling out of the region.
He wrote: “The mercenaries are the main Russian force on this front. They spare nothing, they are losing a significant number of men and they are running out. Very soon we will seize this opportunity, as we did near Kyiv, Kharkiv, Balakliya, and Kupyansk”.
“In particular, the units of the 93rd, 10th, 57th and 5th Brigades that are now defending our homeland in the east of the country”, Syrskyi added.
According to Valerii Zaluzhnyi, the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine: “The continued defence of the city received unanimous support at the meeting of the High Command of Ukraine on March 14. Bakhmut’s defence is key to the stability of the defence of the entire front”.
Despite months of intense fighting – and huge losses for both sides – the Ukrainian forces have continually repelled Wagner’s attempts to seize Bakhmut, as reported by larazon.es.
Thank you for taking the time to read this article. Do remember to come back and check The Euro Weekly News website for all your up-to-date local and international news stories and remember, you can also follow us on Facebook and Instagram.
Share this story
Subscribe to our Euro Weekly News alerts to get the latest stories into your inbox!
By signing up, you will create a Euro Weekly News account if you don't already have one. Review our
Originally from Wales, Chris spent years on the Costa del Sol before moving to the Algarve where he is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news.
Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at email@example.com
Download our media pack in either English or Spanish.