CNN has published an investigation into the activities in Africa of private military companies (PMCs) associated with businessman Yevgeny Prigozhin, whom the media call the “cook of Vladimir Putin.” Within a month, journalists collected information about companies, talked with instructors and PMC participants.
The channel found that a company called Lobaye Invest, which finances a radio station in the Central African Republic (CAR), is associated with Prigozhin’s activities. She also finances the training of army recruits, which are taught by 250 Russian instructors. In addition to them, according to CNN, PMC “Wagner” operates in the country, which, according to media reports, participated in hostilities in Ukraine and Syria. About this channel told one of the mercenaries on condition of anonymity.
Former military intelligence officer Valery Zakharov, who is now responsible for training the military in the CAR and calls himself the president’s security adviser, speaks of instructors as “reservists,” but refused to say who sent them to the country. He claims that he never met Prigogine, and claims that Wagner never worked in the CAR.
Let’s clarify who we mean by Wagner. Composer?
Legally, it (PMCs) does not exist, so we will assume that it does not exist. As for the Central African Republic, there is currently no Wagner PMC in the country.
Advisor to the President of the Central African Republic
CNN was able to obtain documents showing that Zakharov at least once received money from the company M-Finance, which journalists associate with Prigogine.
CAR President Fosten-Arkange Tuadera, claims that Russia does not participate in any economic sectors of the country, except for military training. However, CNN received documents showing that Lobaye Invest received exploration rights at seven sites in search of diamonds and gold.
Local residents working in the mines said that the Russians arrived here a year and a half ago, and now they are collecting all diamonds for them.
Earlier, the BBC received a comment from the press service of Prigogine regarding the interests of a businessman in Africa. Journalists were told that there are no companies associated with Prigogine in the CAR, and he has no relation to Lobaye Invest.