According to a former U.S. ambassador to Russia, we are witnessing “the final saga” of Russian President Vladimir Putin.
In an interview with CNN, Jon Huntsman, who served in the post for two years during the Trump administration, said the armed mutiny launched by Wagner Group chief Yevgeny Prigozhin on Friday embarrassed the Russian leader.
“Putin has been humiliated,” Huntsman said. “That’s not happened many times in his career. So we’re not going to know in the days and weeks and even the months ahead what the likely outcome for Vladimir Putin will be.”
“He still controls the state. He controls the security apparatus. He’s got more bombs and guns than anybody else. But I’m here to tell you I think we’re witnessing the final saga of Vladimir Putin,” he added.
Another former U.S. Ambassador had some comments about the situation as well. Bill Taylor, former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine, told ABC News’ Liney Davis that it’s a battle between “two thugs. There are two Mafia heads going after each other. President Putin is trying to say that he’s got things under control. He clearly didn’t have things under control over the weekend. And Mr. Prigozhin says that he wasn’t really trying for a coup. He wasn’t attempting to take down the Russian government. It was really just a protest. Neither of these stories are very credible.”
During the uprising, which lasted less than 24 hours, Prigozhin’s forces took control of the Russian military headquarters in Rostov-on-Don. His mercenaries later advanced toward Moscow before pulling back after the Kremlin agreed to send Prigozhin to Belarus without charges for him and his soldiers.
Russian authorities confirmed they will not pursue mutiny charges against Prigozhin and his forces.
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