Vladimir Putin behind Yevgeny Prigozhins death in plane crash, says Tory MP

Russia: Footage allegedly shows jet carrying Prigozhin shot down

Tory MPs have suggested Vladimir Putin is behind the plane crash Wagner boss Yevgeny Prigozhin was reportedly killed in.

The warlord, who led a failed coup in June, was on the passenger list of a private jet carrying seven passengers and three crew which crashed while flying from Moscow to St Petersburg.

Tory MP Alicia Kearns, who chairs the Commons Foreign Affairs Committee, said the Russian President “couldn’t let him live” after his rebellion.

The Rutland and Melton MP told the Express: “The speed at which the Russian government has confirmed Yevgeny Prigozhin was on a plane that crashed on a flight from Moscow to St Petersburg should tell us everything we need to know.

“Reports Russian Air Defence shot down the plane suggests Putin is sending a very loud message.

“A number of us expected that Prigozhin would end up dead, Putin couldn’t let him live after his march on Moscow.

“But this story isn’t over yet, how will those loyal to Prigozhin respond?

“Has Putin spent the last couple of months shoring up control of Prigozhin’s assets?”

Tobias Ellwod, the Tory chair of the Commons Defence committee, added: “Of course we await details but this has all the hallmarks of retaliation for the immense humiliation Prigozhin inflicted on Putin in June.

“Prigozhin challenged both the President’s credibility and loyalty of the security forces.

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“These are critical for the survival of any Russian leader. Once they are challenged then the President no longer looks infallible and potential successors start to plot.”

As news of the crash was breaking, Mr Putin spoke at an event commemorating the Battle of Kursk, hailing the heroes of Russia’s “special military operation” in Ukraine.

The Wagner mercenary group marched towards Moscow and were just 120 miles away when a last-minute deal was struck with the Kremlin in June.

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