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Criminal case against Prigozhin to be dropped — Kremlin

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov added that the founder of Wagner PMC will leave for Belarus

MOSCOW, June 25. /TASS/. A criminal case against Wagner Private Military Company (PMC) founder Yevgeny Prigozhin will be dropped, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters.

"You will ask me what will happen to Prigozhin himself. A criminal case against him will be dropped, while he will go to Belarus," the Kremlin official said.

That said, Russian President Vladimir Putin guarantees that Prigozhin will be able to leave Russia for Belarus. "If you are asking me, what are the guarantees that Prigozhin can go to Belarus — that’s the word of the Russian president," Peskov stressed.

On June 23, several audio recordings were posted on Prigozhin’s Telegram channel. He particularly claimed that his forces had come under attack, which he blamed on the country’s military authorities. In this regard, the Federal Security Service (FSB) launched a criminal investigation into calls for armed mutiny. The Russian Defense Ministry slammed the allegations of a strike on the Wagner PMC’s "rear camps" as fake news. The FSB warned Wagner fighters against following Prigozhin’s orders and called on them to detain him.

Putin, in a televised address to the nation on Saturday, described the Wagner group’s actions as armed mutiny and betrayal, vowing to take tough measures against the mutineers.

In the evening, Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko in coordination with Putin held talks with Prigozhin working out a plan on de-escalating the situation. Later, Prigozhin said that the Wagner PMC was halting the movement of its convoys, turning them around and returning to field camps.