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The revolt of the Wagner Group. Washington Post: Some Kremlin elites are looking for Vladimir Putin’s successor

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The revolt of the Wagner Group and the reaction of Vladimir Putin caused a stir among the Moscow elite in Russia. Officials interviewed by the Washington Post speak of a “partial loss of control” over the country by the president. Some in the Kremlin are already looking for someone to replace the Russian president, a Russian official “close to the highest diplomatic circles” assessed.

Putin has “partially lost control” over the country, and some in the Kremlin are already preparing his successor, the Washington Post writes on Tuesday, quoting representatives of the Russian elite. According to one oligarch, as a result of Prigozhin’s rebellion, the Russian president suffered a “total collapse of reputation”.

The Washington Post on Tuesday describes the shock of Wagner Group leader Yevgeny Prigozhin’s march on Moscow and the reaction of Moscow’s elites to the response Vladimir Putin.

“Putin has shown the whole world and the elite that he is nobody and is incapable of doing anything. This is the total collapse of his reputation,” an anonymously quoted “influential Moscow businessman” told the newspaper. Another billionaire shared his opinion. “When you have columns of thousands of people and no one can stop them, the loss of control is evident,” he said.

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Russian official: Some in the Kremlin are looking for someone to replace Putin

A Russian official “close to the highest diplomatic circles” said Putin had “partially lost control of the country” and that some in the Kremlin were “already looking for someone to replace the Russian president.”

>> Yevgeny Prigozhin “had powerful allies”. Who are? <<

“If they search too long, someone else will find it for them,” he added. He recalled that lost by Russia wars – World War I and the Afghanistan – led to the fall of the regime.

“If we lose war in Ukrainethe regime will collapse and we will not be able to get it back.”

Vladimir Putin ‘will try to hide weaknesses’

The oligarchs were particularly shocked by the fact that the Russian military offered minimal resistance to the Wagnerians. According to the newspaper’s interlocutors, this is a sign that some Russian services supported Prigozhin and that his rebellion may represent a deeper struggle within the Russian services for the presidency. One of the businessmen stated that the actions taken by the military against Prigozhin’s army looked like actions of appearances.

Who could be behind Prigozhin? “It’s probably a much larger group than we think, much more powerful.”TVN24

Tatyana Stanovaya, a political scientist, believes that Putin’s reaction to the rebellion and his decision to make a deal with Prigozhin rather than stop him were also problematic for the elites.

READ ALSO: Lukashenko confirms reports about Prigozhin

“Putin looks weak from the point of view of optics, like someone who got scared and was forced to compromise,” Stanovaya said. However, she added that from the point of view of the Russian leader, this option was better than her alternative, which was “a serious, bloody battle on the outskirts of Moscow.” In her opinion, although the weakness of the Russian president has been exposed, “Putin will take it very seriously and will try to hide the weak points.”


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