Kremlin says Putin will not attend Prigozhin's funeral

AFP , Tuesday 29 Aug 2023

Russian President Vladimir Putin will not go to the funeral of Wagner mercenary chief Yevgeny Prigozhin, who died last week in a plane crash, the Kremlin said Tuesday.

A portrait of the owner of private military company Wagner Group Yevgeny Prigozhin is set at an informal street memorial for Wagner Group s military group members killed in a plane crash on Wednesday, near the Kremlin in Moscow, Russia, Sunday, Aug. 27, 2023. AP

Prigozhin, a Putin confidant turned "traitor," was killed last Wednesday two months after ordering his troops to topple Russia's military leadership, in what observers deemed the biggest challenge to Putin's authority since he came to power.

"The president's presence is not envisaged," Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters Tuesday when asked whether Putin would attend the funeral.

There have been no public announcements of when or where Prigozhin, who was 62, will be buried.

"We have no information specifically about the funeral. The decision in this regard is made by family and friends," Peskov added.

Putin last week described Prigozhin as a man who had made "serious mistakes in his life, but he achieved the right results."

The Kremlin has dismissed speculation that it orchestrated the crash in revenge for Wagner's march on Moscow in June.

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