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UK declares Russian Wagner Group a terrorist organization

The British government designated Wagner as a terrorist group. Being part of or supporting Wagner is now a crime in the UK, punishable by up to 14 years in prison.
PMC Wagner Group in Mykolaivka, Donetsk Oblast, 2 February 2023. Credit: Wikimedia Commons
UK declares Russian Wagner Group a terrorist organization

On 15 September, the UK proscribed the Russian mercenary organization, Wagner Group, as a terrorist organization, according to the UK government’s official portal.

The Wagner Group has been added to the list of 78 other proscribed organizations in the UK. An order to proscribe the Wagner Group as a terrorist organization has been in the UK Parliament since 6 September 2023.

According to the order, membership in the Wagner PMC or actively supporting the group will be considered a criminal offense by the UK, which can lead to 14 years in prison.

“This order comes into force with immediate effect and will make belonging to the Wagner Group or actively supporting the group in the UK a criminal offense, with a potential jail sentence of 14 years which can be handed down alongside or in place of a fine,” said in the official statement.

Earlier, two Russian ex-convicts recruited in the Wagner Group confessed how their command, including Wagner’s head Evgeny Prigozhin personally, gave them orders to kill Ukrainian civilians in eastern Ukraine.

The video of the conversation with the former Wagner mercenaries, Maksim Zelenov and Aleksey Chernyavsky, was published by the Russian human rights organization Gulagu.net.

On 26 January 2023, the US Treasury Department introduced new sanctions against the Russian mercenary group Wagner and officially designated it as a transnational criminal organization.

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