Russia confers official veteran status on Wagner Group issuing veteran IDs to its members and integrating them into the National Guard which suggests administrative rehabilitation, following their June mutiny and ‘March for Justice,’ the UK Defense Ministry says in its 23 November intelligence update.
The Ministry tweeted:
- On 14 November 2023, a select group of Wagner veterans were issued with official veteran identification documents. This marks the first time Wagner personnel have been officially recognised as veterans.
- The Russian Ministry of Defence has established a new system allowing Wagner veterans to receive veteran identification documents and commensurate bonuses. The Wagner Group was recently subsumed into Russia’s National Guard (Rosgvardia) command structure.
- This highly likely signals the rehabilitation of some Wagner elements by the Russian administration. This follows a long period of uncertainty on how the administration would regard Wagner personnel in the wake of the Wagner Group’s mutiny [against Putin] and abortive ‘March for Justice’ in June 2023.
The Wagner Group is a Russian state-funded private military company, previously controlled by Yevgeny Prigozhin, used as a proxy for deniable Russian military operations abroad.
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