Wagner chief appears on sidelines of Russia-Africa summit in St. Petersburg

Wagner chief appears on sidelines of Russia-Africa summit in St. Petersburg

Evgeny Prigozhin led a short-lived mutiny against Moscow military leadership late June

By Elena Teslova

MOSCOW (AA) - The head of the Wagner paramilitary group, Evgeny Prigozhin who led a short-lived mutiny against the Moscow military leadership, was spotted on Thursday on the sidelines of the two-day second Russia-Africa summit being held in St. Petersburg.

Prigozhin uploaded on social media several photos of him, one of which was with Leon Dodonou-Punagaza, Central African Republic's envoy to Russia.

After the attempted rebellion in late June, under a deal brokered by Belarusian President Aleksandr Lukashenko, Prigozhin and his company are expected to stay in Belarus.

However, he was seen in St. Petersburg on July 5 as well, when he visited the regional office of the Federal Security Service (FSB).

Prigozhin on June 24 accused the Russian Defense Ministry of attacking the group’s fighters, declared a “March of Justice” and set off toward Moscow.

The Russian Federal Security Service designated the group’s action “an armed rebellion” and opened a criminal case against Prigozhin, while President Vladimir Putin called the private military company's uprising an act of “treason.”

Prigozhin later turned back “to avoid bloodshed,” and the agreement with Putin was negotiated through Lukashenko.

Before joining Russia's "special military operation" in Ukraine, the Wagner group had been working for some time in several African countries including the Central African Republic and Mali.

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