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We will defend our country from internal treason – Putin

The attempted insurrection by the chief of the Wagner private military company, Evgeny Prigozhin, amounts to a betrayal of Russia and its people, Russian President Vladimir Putin said.

1. Importance of unity

President Putin argued that “Russia is today waging a grueling fight for its future,” facing off with the “neo-Nazis and their masters.” He went on to stress that “essentially the entire might of the West’s military, economic and information machine” is being directed against the country.

“This battle, when the fate of our people is being decided,” calls for national unity and consolidation, Putin said in his address. According to the president, all internal conflicts and bickering must be put aside at present as “our external enemies can and use them to undermine us internally.”

The Russian head of state emphasized that any actions driving a wedge between Russians are nothing short of “backstabbing of our country and our people.”

2. Bitter history lessons

Putin reminded Russians that a similar scenario played out in the country in 1917, when it was in the middle of World War I. He recounted how “intrigues, bickering, politicking behind the army’s and the people’s back” led to the “collapse of the state,” and the “tragedy of the Civil War.”

“Russians were killing Russians, brothers were killing brothers, while various political adventurers and foreign powers were capitalizing on it,” the president said.

Putin vowed to prevent this from happening as well as to defend Russia and its people, “including from internal mutiny.”

3. Nature of the threat

In his address, Putin clearly labelled the PMC coup attempt as a “betrayal.” He cited “enormous ambitions and personal interests” of certain individuals as the reasons behind this “betrayal of their country and its people.” He went on to accuse those responsible, without naming Prigozhin in particular, of turning their back on the joint military cause in Ukraine and the memory of the fallen fighters.

If successful, the coup would lead to “anarchy and fratricide,” resulting, in the long run, in Russia’s “defeat” and “capitulation,” according to Putin.

The president characterized “any internal mutiny” as a death threat to the Russian state and nation. The president pledged to take “tough measures” against the mutineers, who have “willingly entered the path of betrayal” and prepared “armed insurrection.”

Those responsible will be brought to account before the Russian people, the president assured the public.

3. Measures taken

“All the necessary orders have been issued to the armed forces and other authorities,” Putin revealed. He added that a special anti-terrorist security protocol had been enacted in Moscow, Moscow Region and several other locations.

The Russian president acknowledged that the situation in Rostov-on-Don, southern Russia, remains “difficult,” with the functioning of local civil and military authorities being “effectively blocked.” However, the state will take “decisive actions to stabilize” the situation in the city.

Concluding his address to the nation, President Putin promised to do everything he could to defend the “country, [and] defend the constitutional order, life, security and liberty of citizens.”

in an address to the nation on Saturday morning. He also vowed that the country’s law enforcement agencies will take decisive actions to restore order.

  • In a televised speech, Putin appealed to Russian service members and those “who have been drawn into this criminal gamble by deceit or threats,” without naming Prigozhin in particular.

He noted that Moscow is engaged in a historic struggle to safeguard its future while “repelling aggression from neo-Nazis and their masters” in the West.

  • “We are fighting for the lives and safety of our people, for our sovereignty and independence. For the right to be and remain Russia,” the president said, urging fellow citizens to join forces and put aside all the divisions that could be exploited by foreign adversaries.
  • “That’s why the actions that split our unity are, in fact, apostasy of our people, of our comrades-in-arms… This is a stab in the back to our country and our people.”

Against this backdrop, Russia’s Armed Forces and other government agencies have received the necessary orders, Putin said, also pointing out that antiterrorist measures have been introduced in Moscow, Moscow Region, and a number of other areas.

He also noted that “decisive actions will be taken to stabilize the situation in Rostov-on-Don,” in southern Russia. Earlier in the day, several media outlets shared clips of tanks moving around the city, with unidentified soldiers patrolling the streets.

The Russian president also urged those being drawn into the insurrection to “make the only right choice and stop taking part in criminal actions.”

On Friday, Prigozhin accused the Russian Defense Ministry of launching a deadly missile strike on a Wagner Group camp, vowing retaliation. The ministry, however, dismissed the allegation, describing it as “an information provocation.”

The Russian authorities later said that they had opened a criminal investigation into the Wagner chief for allegedly calling for an armed rebellion.

Source: RT