The Foreign Ministry of Belarus will invite the ambassadors of Russia and Ukraine in connection with the detention of Wagner Group militants near Minsk. This was stated by Secretary of State of the Republic Security Council Andriy Ravkov after a meeting with the President of Belarus with members of the Security Council, reports.

According to him, a number of issues in the field of national security were discussed during the meeting.

“First of all, today’s change of circumstances, when in the morning in the territory of the Republic in one of the sanatoriums near Minsk 32 people were detained – persons of Russian citizenship who belong to Wagner Group. Now, they are being worked on, the detainees are being interrogated,” the Secretary of State said.

In addition, the questions concern the work of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on sending inquiries and inviting ambassadors of both the Russian Federation and Ukraine for clarification and discussion. “Already now, according to available information, according to the results of surveys of these people, about 14 people are those who fought in the Donbas. That is why we also invite the Ambassador of Ukraine on this issue,” Ravkov explained.

It should be noted that on 29 July, in Belarus, a gang of Russian mercenaries was detained among whom there were fighters from Donbas. They arrived to destabilise the situation in the country during the elections.

Help from Open Sources

Wagner Group, also known as PMC Wagner, is a Russian mercenary military structure, was established in 2013. It took part in hostilities in a number of conflicts, in particular in Donbas on the side of Russia, in Syria on the side of Russia’s ally the Assad regime, in Sudan.

In Donbas, units of the structure provided cover for regular units of the Russian army in the battles for Debaltseve and Luhansk airport, and performed various tasks, including the elimination of militant leaders whose activities did not satisfy the Russian leadership.

At the official level, the existence of the organisation was not commented on by Russia, but in the Russian media the organisation is positioned as a private military company under the command of retired Lieutenant Colonel Dmitry Utkin, nicknamed “Wagner.”

International mercenaries are gathered under the banner of a private company, but the basis of this structure is retired Russian servicemen who carry out the orders of the Russian command. They are being trained on the basis of the 10th separate brigade of the GRU of Russia. The group’s fighters and their commanders, led by Wagner, receive departmental awards signed personally by Russian President Vladimir Putin. They receive heavy weapons and equipment directly from the storage bases of the Russian Defence Ministry. They are separated from the personnel of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation only by the wording in the contract and the amount of financial security, as well as the fact that it is easier for official Moscow to abandon them.

Natalia Tolub

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