MOSCOW – United States and Western officials say a preliminary intelligence assessment found that the plane crash Wednesday that is believed to have killed Wagner leader Yevgeny Prigozhin was caused by an explosion that was intentional, The Associated Press reported.
It is not clear what caused the explosion, the AP reported. It is however believed that Prigozhin and multiple of his lieutenants were killed “to avenge a mutiny” which was when Prigozhin’s Wagner group tried to go against Russia’s military in June.
The U.S. assessment came to light after Vladimir Putin Thursday shared his condolences to the families of those who were reported to be on board the jet, the AP reported. The White House has declined to comment.
The Russian aviation agency said that Wagner chief Yevgeny Prigozhin was on the plane that crashed Wednesday, according to the AP. All 10 passengers on board were killed.
The Pentagon said in an initial assessment that “it’s likely Prigozhin was killed,” according to Brig. Gen. Patrick Ryder per The New York Times. Ryder did not provide any further details on that determination.
The Joint Chiefs of Staff chairman, Gen. Mark A. Milley said, according to the Times, that could take some time to determine if Prigozhin was on the plane. The Wagner Group has not confirmed his death either.
“I don’t know for a fact what happened, but I’m not surprised,” President Biden said while speaking with reporters Wednesday, the AP reported. “There’s not much that happens in Russia that Putin’s not behind. But I don’t know enough to know the answer.”
The plane was believed to be carrying three pilots and seven passengers, the AP reported. It was heading to St. Petersburg from Moscow before it went down about 60 miles from the capital, officials say, according to Russia’s state news agency, Tass.
How to find Country Legends
Download the FREE Country Legends 97.1 app now!
Eagles on Tour
Celebrities react to death of singer-actor Aaron Carter
Bucs WR Antonio Brown off team after discarding jersey, exiting field
Houston’s Iconic Warehouse Live Relocating to Rise Rooftop in Midtown
Thanksgiving 2022: Which grocery stores are open, closed on Thanksgiving?
Florida sues realty company and reality-star founder for ‘swindling’ homeowners across U.S.