May, 27

Yevgeny Prigozhin: Wagner chief Yevgeny Prigozhin’s plane appeared fine on radar until last 30 seconds

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If you have been following Russian politics, the death of Wagner chief Yevgeny Prigozhin in a plane crash may not come as an unexpected event. Many analysts have been speculating about the fate of Prigozhin from the day he led an armed rebellion against Russian forces.
It’s no wonder that US President Joe Biden was not surprised when he was briefed about the plane crash involving Prigozhin.
“But I’m not surprised,” Biden said about the Wagner chief’s death. “There is not much that happens in Russia that Putin is not behind, but I don’t know enough to know the answer,” he said.Was there something unusual about the plane which was carrying the Wagner chief? An Embraer Legacy 600 executive jet, suspected to have transported Yevgeny Prigozhin, displayed no apparent issues until a sudden and steep descent within its last 30 seconds of flight, Reuters reported, quoting data from flight-tracking.
Rosaviatsia, the aviation agency of Russia, revealed that Prigozhin, who had orchestrated a failed mutiny in June, was among the ten individuals onboard the crashed aircraft. The plane was en route from Moscow to St. Petersburg when it crashed close to Kuzhenkino village in Russia’s Tver Region, as stated by the country’s Ministry of Emergency Situations.
Around 3:19pm GMT, the aircraft underwent an abrupt vertical descent, as described by Ian Petchenik from Flightradar24. Within half a minute, the plane plummeted over 8,000 feet from its cruising altitude of 28,000 feet.

Petchenik noted, “Whatever transpired, it unfolded swiftly.” He further speculated, “They might have been struggling to control the aircraft following the incident.” However, prior to the sudden descent, there were “no indications of any issues with the aircraft.”
Video footage depicted the plane rapidly descending with its nose nearly pointed straight downward, accompanied by a trail of smoke or vapor behind it.
Russian authorities initiated a criminal investigation to ascertain the cause of the incident. Some undisclosed sources within Russian media suggested that the plane could have been targeted by one or more surface-to-air missiles. However, Reuters could not verify this claim.

US President Joe Biden reacts to reports of Wagner Leader Prigozhin’s death, says ‘Not Surprised’

Embraer SA, the Brazilian aircraft manufacturer, clarified that it had not provided any services or support to the plane in recent years. The luxury jet, capable of seating around 13 passengers, was associated with the registration number RA-02795, which matched the plane that transported Prigozhin to Belarus after the failed mutiny, according to an industry insider.
The last recorded position of the aircraft on online flight tracker Flightradar24 was at 3:11pm GMT, just before the crash occurred. It’s likely that signal interference in the area hindered the continuous collection of location data.
The remaining data covered a span of nine minutes. Flightradar24 reported that the jet underwent a series of altitude changes, ascending and descending by a few thousand feet in 30-second intervals before its final, catastrophic plunge. The last data from the jet was received by Flightradar24 at 3:20pm.
(With inputs from agencies)
Watch Wagner group leader Yevgeny Prigozhin feared dead in Russia plane crash

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