The UK Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office has updated its Sanctions List adding four people connected to the Russian mercenary Wagner Group’s activities in the Central African Republic.
Alexander Alexandrovich Ivanov, Aleksandr Grigorievitch Maloletko, Vitalii Viktorovitch Perfilev and Dimitri Sytii, were all named by the Foreign Office as “persons associated with the Wagner Group”.
Perfilev is the head of the Wagner in the Central African Republic, while Pikalov is the Wagner Commander in Africa.
The move comes after the head of Britain’s MI6 agency, Sir Richard Moore, accused Russia of using Wagner as a tool of imperialism in Africa, offering leaders in the Central African Republic, Mali and other countries a “Faustian pact” of protection in return for handing over mineral wealth to Russia.
Speaking in Prague on Wednesday (July 19), Sir Richard said the government of President Vladimir Putin was beset by “venality, infighting and callous incompetence” and the mutiny by Wagner Group mercenary leader Yevgeny Prigozhin had “exposed the inexorable decay of the unstable autocracy over which Putin presides.”
He said Putin was “under pressure” after the brief rebellion and the “humiliating” deal he struck with the help of Belarus to end it. The Kremlin says Prigozhin attended a military meeting in Moscow with Putin after the mutiny.
“He really didn’t fight back against Prigozhin. He cut a deal to save his skin,” Moore told the audience.
“Prigozhin started off as a traitor at breakfast, he had been pardoned by supper, and then two days later he was invited for tea,” Moore said.
“So there are some things that even the chief of MI6 finds a little bit difficult to interpret, in terms of who’s in and who’s out.”