In a striking development, US President Joe Biden has insinuated a possible connection between Russian President Vladimir Putin and the recent plane crash near Moscow.
Biden’s remarks hinted at a level of suspicion, as he acknowledged that the notion of the Russian mercenary being targeted in such a manner didn’t come as a surprise.
Yevgeny Prigozhin, the head of the Russian mercenary organization known as Wagner, which made headlines for a brief mutiny against the Russian military leadership in June, was reportedly aboard the aircraft that crashed to the northwest of Moscow.
The Russian Federal Air Transport Agency has confirmed this incident.
“An investigation has been launched into the crash of the Embraer aircraft, which occurred tonight in the Tver region,” the Federal Air Transport Agency said in a statement, according to the official state news agency TASS.” According to the list of passengers, among them is the name and surname of Yevgeny Prigozhin.”
Tragedy struck on Wednesday when the private Embraer jet crashed near the village of Kuzhenkino in the Tver region.
“You may recall, I was asked about this,”
During an interview with CNN, US President Joe Biden made reference to remarks he had made back in July.
In those comments, he had conveyed that Yevgeny Prigozhin, the leader of the Wagner mercenary group, ought to be cautious about his own security in the aftermath of the thwarted mutiny. This allusion by Biden adds a retrospective dimension to the current situation, offering insight into the ongoing narrative surrounding Prigozhin and his potential vulnerabilities.
“I said I would be careful what I rode in. I don’t know for a fact what happened, but I’m not surprised,” Biden said
At a press conference in Helsinki, Finland, in July, Biden joked that if he were Prighozin, “I’d be careful what I eat, keep my eye on my menu.”
Biden added that there is “not much that happens in Russia that Putin is not behind but I don’t know enough to know the answer.”
Meanwhile, the Russian Ministry of Emergency Services revealed that the aircraft carried a total of seven passengers and three crew members. Preliminary information sadly indicates that all individuals on board lost their lives in the crash.
The ministry is actively engaged in search operations to gather more information and ascertain the cause of this devastating incident.
The passenger list released by the Russian aviation agency revealed the presence of notable individuals, including Utkin Dmitriy, a long-standing confidant of Prigozhin and a key figure in the Wagner mercenary group.
Additionally, Valeriy Chekalov, a senior aide to Prigozhin, was also among those on board.
Distressing developments emerged as state media outlet Russia 24 confirmed the discovery of eight bodies at the wreckage site of the ill-fated aircraft. According to earlier reports from TASS, the aircraft’s tragic fate saw it burning upon impact, having been airborne for approximately thirty minutes.
In response to this tragedy, Russian investigators have taken swift action, launching a criminal case to delve into the circumstances surrounding the crash. The Russian Investigative Committee has dispatched a team to the scene, tasked with determining the precise causes that led to this catastrophic event.
This incident follows a significant historical backdrop, with Yevgeny Prigozhin’s recent attempted rebellion casting a shadow. The rebellion, which posed a notable challenge to Russian President Vladimir Putin’s authority, was abruptly halted a few months back in a deal that mandated Prigozhin and his Wagner group members to relocate to Belarus.
The investigation into the crash now unfolds against this intricate background, prompting questions about its potential implications and connections.