ANALYSIS

Exiled warlord Yevgeny Prigozhin sends defiant message in Russia’s game of thrones

His advance on Moscow has been likened by some to Mussolini’s march on Rome – but can the mercenary contninue to escape Putin’s wrath, asks Kim Sengupta

Tuesday 27 June 2023 11:07 BST
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<p>Putin has said more than once that one thing he cannot forgive is ‘treachery’ </p>

Putin has said more than once that one thing he cannot forgive is ‘treachery’

After the astonishing and momentous 24 hours in which an apparent coup unfolded in Russia, there is now uncertainty and confusion about who is likely to survive in the Kremlin’s deadly game of thrones.

The main man in the arena, Yevgeny Prigozhin, was unheard and unseen since calling off his mutiny – in stark contrast to his frequent and fierce rants about the state of the Ukraine war.

He broke his silence late on Monday with an 11-minute audio message declaring that he and his fighters had only engaged in hostilities in response to the Russian government seeking to close down his mercenary company, Wagner, and merge it with the defence ministry.

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