…By Roland Peterson for TDPel Media.
Yevgeny Prigozhin, the leader of the Russian mercenary group Wagner, has made a statement revealing that approximately 10,000 prisoners recruited by his organization to fight in Ukraine have been killed on the battlefield.
Prigozhin had visited Russian prisons last year, attempting to persuade inmates to join Wagner in Ukraine, promising amnesty upon their return if they survived.
It is believed that these convicts were used as cannon fodder, accounting for the majority of Wagner’s losses in the pro-Western country.
High Casualties among Prisoner Fighters:
In a recently published video interview, Prigozhin disclosed that out of the 50,000 prisoners he took, around 20 percent were killed.
He also mentioned a similar casualty rate among those who had signed contracts with Wagner but did not provide an exact figure.
These revelations shed light on the significant number of fatalities among prisoners and contracted fighters involved in the conflict.
Ongoing Battle in Bakhmut:
Both Wagner and regular Russian troops announced over the weekend that the town of Bakhmut in eastern Ukraine had fallen.
However, the Ukrainian government stated that its forces were still engaged in the fight for Bakhmut.
The situation remains tense, with conflicting reports regarding the town’s control.
Prigozhin’s Criticisms and Calls for Action:
Amidst his growing influence throughout the year-long offensive, Prigozhin has openly criticized Russia’s top military officials.
He holds Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu and Chief of the General Staff Valery Gerasimov responsible for significant losses.
Prigozhin called them incompetent and blamed them for the high casualty count.
He emphasized the need for accountability and urged the military elite to send their own children to the front lines.
A Plea for Responsibility:
Prigozhin, a businessman known for his close ties to President Vladimir Putin, lambasted Russia’s privileged elites, pointing out that their children live comfortably while men from impoverished regions are dying in Ukraine.
He acknowledged the growing number of relatives affected by the conflict, and he emphasized that the magnitude of loss cannot be ignored.
Prigozhin stated that his fighters would withdraw from the devastated city by June 1, transferring control to the Russian army.
Russian Troop Losses:
According to a statement by the White House in early May, more than 20,000 Russian troops have died, and another 80,000 have been wounded during five months of fighting in eastern Ukraine, particularly in Bakhmut.
The conflict has taken a toll on both sides, resulting in significant human losses.
The revelation by Yevgeny Prigozhin, the leader of Wagner, regarding the deaths of approximately 10,000 prisoners involved in the Ukraine conflict highlights the grim reality of the ongoing battle.
As casualties continue to rise, Prigozhin’s criticisms of Russia’s military leadership and his call for accountability resonate within the context of a conflict that has impacted numerous families.
The situation in Bakhmut remains unresolved, underscoring the volatility and complexity of the conflict in eastern Ukraine.
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