General Sergey Surovikin, deputy commander of the united group of Russian troops in Ukraine, has been arrested. This information was reported to The Moscow Times by two sources close to the apparatus of the Defense Ministry. Officially, the agency did not comment on this information.
“The story with him there was not OK. For the authorities. I cannot say anything else”, one of the sources commented on the reason for the arrest.
“In the context of Prigozhin. Apparently he [Surovikin] picked the side [of Prigozhin during the mutiny] and got grabbed by the balls”, said a second source. When asked where the general is now, he replied, “this information is not even commented on in our internal channels”.
Rumors about the arrest of Surovikin were earlier published by the military blogger Vladimir Romanov. According to him, the general was arrested on June 25 – the day after the rebellion of Wagner PMC led by Yevgeny Prigozhin.
According to The Moscow Times source, it is not entirely clear whether Surovikin was aware of Prigozhin’s rebellion. “He did not behave particularly obediently when tasked with reading the text on camera and shambles, too defiantly to the leadership”, the source said. Because of this, he said, there might have been an impression that Surovikin was part of the “Prigozhin coalition”.
General Armageddon, the holder of the highest general rank in the Russian army – on a par with Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu – who became famous for rocket attacks on power facilities in Ukraine, Surovikin disappeared immediately after the mutiny, The Guardian wrote. He “hasn’t been in touch with his family for three days”, writes former Ekho Moskvy chief Alexei Venediktov. His security guards don’t answer either.
Surovikin knew in advance about Yevgeny Prigozhin’s plans to launch an armed mutiny against Russia’s military leadership, The New York Times previously reported, citing U.S. officials familiar with the intelligence.
They said they are now trying to find out whether Surovikin helped plan the mutiny, which turned into a march on Moscow and became the most serious threat to the regime of “president” Vladimir Putin in his 23 years in power.