Yevgeny Prigozhin the chief of the mercenary Wagner Group has had his phone lines cut off as Vladimir Putin is fearful there will be a “power grab” he will come into power.
Wagner are essential for Putin as there is fierce fighting in and around the city of Bakhmut and Prigozhin has been demanding ammunition.
Prigozhin wrote in a Telegram message from the frontline in Ukraine, “Our ammunition has not improved.
“But there has indeed been a change.
“In order for me to stop asking for ammunition, I have had all special communication phones in all offices, in all units, switched off.”
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He added, “They have blocked all passes to the state agencies that make decisions.
“I will not name them so as not to discredit them in any way. So now I can only ask through the media.”
Prigozhin threatened Putin that the whole frontline will collapse due to the “ammunition shortage” and warned Crimea will fall to Ukraine.
He also said he has “political ambitions” and added that “I have decided to run for president in 2024,” which will anger Putin.
Prigozhin then said that he will run for the “President of Ukraine” if he beats Volodymyr Zelensky adding, “then everything will be fine and ammunition will not be needed.”
He has seen a very fast and big rise in support which makes him a clear rival to the Russian President.
Russia expert Dr Olga Lautman told Express.co.uk believes the mercenary boss is plotting a “power grab” against Putin as the Russian leader is threatened by him as his forces are making stronger gains than Moscow’s forces.
Dr Lautman said, “I think he is trying to carve out a path for a power grab.
“Putin is stuck because he needs the Wagner mercenaries, and he needs the defence ministry.
“If he goes against Prigozhin, he knows that will cause an even bigger split.
“He is doing it for a power grab, and I think eventually he will challenge Putin.”
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