White House Security Council spokesman John Kirby said the Treasury Department would designate the Wagner Group as an international criminal group. He announced additional sanctions against the group for next week.
John Kirby at a briefing at the White House said that “The Wagner Group is becoming a center of power competing with the Russian military and other Russian ministries.” According to the American assessment, “there are probably growing tensions between Russian officials and Mr. (Evgeny) Prigozhin.”
The Wagner Group is a company associated with the pro-Kremlin businessman Yevgeny Prigozhin, responsible, among other things, for recruiting prisoners for the war with Ukraine. Since mid-December 2021, Wagnerians have been subject to EU sanctions for torture, executions and killings, including in Libya, Syria and Donbass. The crimes of the Wagnerians in Syria were reported in Russia by the independent Novaya Gazeta.
During the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the Wagner group is one of the most important components of the Russian forces on particularly difficult sections of the front, including in the Donetsk region.
Main photo source: IGOR RUSSAK / Reuters / Forum