Russia says genetic tests confirm Prigozhin died in plane crash - FinanceTody

Russia says genetic tests confirm Prigozhin died in plane crash - FinanceTody

Russian investigators said on Sunday that genetic tests had confirmed that Yevgeny Prigozhin, chief of the Wagner mercenary group, was among the 10 people killed in a plane crash last week.

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Russia's aviation agency had previously published the names of all 10 on board the private jet which crashed in the Tver region northwest of Moscow on Wednesday. They included Prigozhin and Dmitry Utkin, his right-hand man who helped found the Wagner group.

"As part of the investigation of the plane crash in the Tver region, molecular-genetic examinations have been completed," Russia's Investigative Committee said in a statement on the Telegram messaging app.

"According to their results, the identities of all 10 dead were established. They correspond to the list stated in the flight sheet," it said.

There had been some speculation, especially on pro-Wagner Telegram channels, about whether Prigozhin - who was known to take various security precautions in anticipation of a possible attempt on his life - had really been on the doomed flight.

'STAB IN THE BACK' The crash came two months to the day after Prigozhin and his Wagner mercenaries staged a mutiny against Russian military commanders in which they took control of a southern city, Rostov, and advanced towards Moscow before turning back 200 km (125 miles) from the capital.

Muscovites laid flowers on Sunday at a makeshift shrine festooned with Russian flags and photographs set up a short distance from the Kremlin to the memory of Prigozhin and Utkin.