A day after Russian mercenary chief Yevgeny Prigozhin and some of his top lieutenants presumably died in a plane crash that was widely seen as an assassination to avenge a mutiny that challenged President Vladimir Putin, the Russian president finally broke his silence and expressed condolences to the families of those who were aboard the jet, including Prigozhin
Later, President Putin also added that the passengers had “made a significant contribution” to the fighting in Ukraine.
“We remember this, we know, and we will not forget,” the president said in a televised interview with the Russian-installed leader of Ukraine's partially occupied Donetsk region, Denis Pushilin.
Putin recalled that he had known Prigozhin since the early 1990s and described him as “a man of difficult fate” who had “made serious mistakes in life, and he achieved the results he needed — both for himself and, when I asked him about it, for the common cause, as in these last months. He was a talented man, a talented businessman.”