A tantalising new video appears to show slain Russian warlord Yevgeny Prigozhincommenting on his ‘elimination’ in the days before he was reportedly killed.
It comes amid a wave of conspiracy theories that the Wagner boss may have cheated death by putting a body double on his doomed business jet which crashed in Russia on 23 August.
Many in the West believe he was assassinated at the behest of Vladimir Putin in revenge for the coup he led in June against the dictator’s regime.
In the footage, Prigozhin, 62, is seen wearing military fatigues in a car, and says: ‘For those discussing whether or not I am alive.
‘How am I doing? It’s the weekend, the second half of August 23. I am in Africa,’ he says, speaking to camera. ‘So fans of discussing my elimination, intimate life, earnings or whatever, as a matter of fact, everything is fine.’
The video was posted by Grey Zone, a Telegram channel linked to Wagner.
It did so without comment but an earlier post by the channel showing his grave was captioned: ‘He once said that the dead speak louder than the living. He proved it!’
Grey Zone did not say when the footage was filmed.
Yet the video – if genuine – does not prove Prigozhin is alive.
He is known to have been in Africa – where Wagner has interests and military operations – before returning to Moscow ahead of the air crash last week.
Pro-war Military Informant channel suspects the video was recorded on the weekend of 19-20 August, when he was in Africa – days before Russia said he and nine others were killed when his business jet came down near Moscow.
‘In just a few days, Prigozhin will return to Russia, where he will die on August 23 in the explosion of his Embraer Legacy 600 business jet in the Tver region,’ said the channel. ‘A special chill runs from the literally prophetic words of the head of the Wagner PMC, who ironically mentions his possible liquidation.’
Such a timing fits with the claim in the video that he was alive in Africa in the second half of August 2023. He does not mention the air crash in the footage.