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Prigozhin Admits West’s Ramstein Tank Commitment is Bad News for Russia


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Yevgeny Prigozhin, the head of the Wagner Group of mercenaries fighting for Moscow, has expressed concern at the commitment made by Ukraine’s allies to provide military aid to Kyiv.

The businessman who has close links to Vladimir Putin was responding to what was agreed at the meeting of the Ukraine Defense Contact Group of countries co-ordinating efforts to fight Russian aggression.

At a meeting held at the Ramstein air base in Germany, the coalition members signed a letter of intent to open a maintenance hub in Poland for Leopard 2 main battle tanks used by Ukrainian troops, Ukrainian Defense Minister, Oleksiiy Reznikov tweeted on Friday.

In a Telegram post, Prigozhin described his concern at the Western donation to Kyiv of 230 tanks and 1,500 armored vehicles, a figure referred to by U.S. Defense Secretary Austin Lloyd at the Ramstein summit.

In January, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said a dozen countries had joined the “tank coalition,” from which Kyiv would get supplies of the vehicles, some of which Poland, Germany, and the U.K. have already delivered.

The Wagner chief said promised air defense systems and the training of up to 100,000 troops meant Ukraine had been given a “sufficient amount” to pose “serious opposition” to Russia.

Austin said that Ukraine had also received other equipment and ammunition for more than nine new armored brigades. Earlier, he said that nine countries had pledged to supply over 150 Leopard 2 tanks and that Putin’s invasion had brought NATO countries closer.

But Prigozhin said that the statements of Western support for Ukraine “does not bring anything good for us.” The position of NATO that it is waiting for Ukraine to join the alliance “also does not bring anything good,” he added.

The rest of Prigozhin’s post speculated about when Ukraine would launch its anticipated counter-offensive which, he said, would not take place for another 10 days until the ground dries.

“Prigozhin does not appear to be delusional and says there are no good news for Russia in the decisions made,” at the Ramstein-11 summit, tweeted War Translated, next to Prigozhin’s comment, which he said had “worrying” consequences for Russia. Newsweek has emailed the Russian Defense Ministry for comment.

Prigozhin, whose troops are focused on the battle for the Donetsk town of Bakhmut, has recently resumed cooperation with Russia’s Defense Ministry after weeks of criticizing how it is conducting the war, according to the Institute for the Study of War. He has also raised the prospect of Moscow seeking to freeze the conflict.

Source: News Week


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