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Chechen leader says his fighters ready to replace Wagner Group "cannon fodder" in Bakhmut

Friday, 5 May 2023, 20:46
Chechen leader says his fighters ready to replace Wagner Group cannon fodder in Bakhmut

Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov has said that he was prepared to send Kadyrovites [Chechen forces subordinate to Kadyrov and fighting as part of the Russian army – ed.] to Bakhmut, to replace Wagner Group mercenaries who allegedly want to leave the city. Bakhmut remains the hottest spot on the front, and hundreds of Russian soldiers and Wagner Group mercenaries are being killed there. Wagner Group leader Yevgeny Prigozhin has previously accused Russian military leadership of failing to supply ammunition to his fighters, resulting in high rates of fatalities.

Source: Kadyrov on Telegram

Quote from Kadyrov: "If elder brother Prigozhin and his Wagner [Group] withdraw [from Bakhmut], the General Staff will lose an experienced combat unit. But younger brother Kadyrov and his Akhmat [Battalion] will replace it in Bakhmut.


If this scenario prevails, our fighters are ready to set out and take up positions. This is a matter of hours."

Details: Kadyrov addressed Wagner Group leader Yevgeny Prigozhin, Russian Defence Minister Sergey Shoigu, and Chief of Staff of the Russian Armed Forces Valery Gerasimov, and urged the three of them to make peace.

He said public squabbles made both Russian forces and civil society less motivated.

Kadyrov further said that he was "disappointed to hear Prigozhin’s claims" and "twice as disappointed that the Russian Defence Ministry leadership has not responded to or met with Wagner Group leaders".

He said that when Kadyrovites requested five tanks from the Russian Defence Ministry during the siege of Mariupol, they were only given one.

He claimed that that tank’s crew fled during their very first battle, and the Kadyrovites allegedly caught them, "put them back into the tank", and told them to shoot the targets the Chechen forces pointed out to them.

Kadyrov criticised both the state of Russian military equipment, and Prigozhin’s decision to show images of Wagner Group mercenaries who had been killed in battle.

Quote from Kadyrov: "It is wrong to film the bodies of one’s killed brothers-in-arms to make a public splash. Let’s never do that."

Details: In an attempt to shame Prigozhin, Kadyrov said that Kadyrovites also face daily problems in the areas they are responsible for, and yet his commanders never take it to the Internet to complain, but rather raise any issues "via internal channels of communication with the leadership".

The Chechen leader claimed that the Russian Ministry of Defence and General Staff always helped and supported his units.

Previously: On 5 May, Yevgeny Prigozhin wrote to the leadership of the Russian Ministry of Defence to say that he would be withdrawing Wagner Group mercenaries from Bakhmut on 10 May.

He claimed that the reason for this was that the Russian Ministry of Defence was not providing his fighters with enough ammunition, and he did not want his people to be "doomed to senseless death".

The Armed Forces of Ukraine are sceptical about the claim made by Yevgeny Prigozhin, the leader of the Wagner Group, that his fighters will supposedly start leaving Bakhmut on 10 May.

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