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Russia. Independent media write about the arrest of General Sergei Surovikin. Radio Swoboda: contact with him has been lost

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General Sergei Surovikin has been arrested, the independent Russian portal The Moscow Times reported, citing its own sources. The reason, he said, was the support of the head of the mercenary Wagner Group, Yevgeny Prigozhin. Earlier, the American newspaper “New York Times” wrote that Surovikin knew about Prigozhin’s plans to start a mutiny. Radio Swoboda reported that the general had not been in contact with his family for three days, and his bodyguards could not be contacted.

– The story with him (Surowikin – ed.) was not right according to the authorities. I can’t say anything else,” said one of the interlocutors to The Moscow Times. Another stated that Surovikin “apparently chose Prigozhin’s side during the rebellion.” When asked where the general is now, the answer was: – We do not comment on such information.

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The Moscow Times reminded that the military pro-Kremlin blogger Vladimir Romanov had previously written about Surovikin’s arrest, claiming that the general had been arrested on June 25, the day after the rebellion of Yevgeny Prigozhin and the branches of the Wagner Group. Romanov claimed that Surovikin was in the Lefortovo detention center in Moscow.

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According to the interlocutors of the independent portal, it is not entirely clear whether Surovikin really knew about Yevgeny Prigozhin’s intentions. “He was not very humble when he was entrusted with the task of reading the statement on camera, he was too brave with his superiors,” an interlocutor told The Moscow Times.

On June 24, at night, when Prigozhin and the mercenaries of the Wagner Group were in Rostov-on-Don, where they occupied the headquarters of the Southern Military District, a video was posted on the website of the Russian Ministry of Defense in which the general appealed to the Wagnerians to “stop and submit to the will and by order of the president Russia“.

Sergei Surovikin. Shot from a recording directed at Wagnerians function.mil.ru

According to the New York Times, citing US officials, Surovikin knew that Prigozhin was planning a mutiny against the Russian military leadership.

The interlocutors told the newspaper that Russian authorities are now trying to determine whether Surovikin helped Prigozhin plot the mutiny, which was the most serious threat to Putin’s 23-year rule so far.

“General Surovikin has not contacted his family for three days”

On the other hand, Radio Svoboda, reporting on the current situation of Surovikin, refers to reports by Alexei Venediktov, the former head of Ekho Moskvy radio, which was closed by the Kremlin.

Venediktov, commenting on the rumors about the arrest of Surovikin and his deputy, General Andrei Yudin, wrote on Telegram: “General Yudin is at home. General Surovikin has not been in contact with his family for three days, and his bodyguards are not responding either.”

Surovikin is a commander respected by the soldiers and still has an influence on the conduct of military operations.

According to US officials, there are indications that other Russian generals may have supported Prigozhin’s attempt to forcibly change the leadership of the defense ministry. According to CNN sources, Prigozhin would not have decided to rebel if he did not think that high-ranking people could support him.

Honorary member of the Wagner Group

The project of the Dossier Center of a well-known critic of the Kremlin Mikhail Khodorkovsky wrote that in 2017, Surovikin became an honorary member of the Wagner Group. He was to receive a personal badge of this formation with the number M-3744.

Earlier, Yevgeny Prigozhin, in conflict with the defense minister Sergei Shoiguclaimed that Surovikin is “the most competent commander of the Russian army.”

Currently, General Surovikin is the deputy commander of the combined group of troops fighting in Ukraine. Since January this year, it has been headed by the chief of the Russian general staff, Valery Gerasimov.

The Moscow Times, PAP, tvn24.pl

Main photo source: GAVRIIL GRIGOROV/SPUTNIK/KREMLIN/POOL/PAP



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