Sept 6 (Reuters) – The Russian mercenary Wagner Group is about to be proscribed as a terrorist group by the UK authorities, the BBC reported on Tuesday citing a draft order.
The draft order will permit Wagner’s belongings to be categorised as terrorist property and seized, BBC stated, including that it will likely be unlawful to be a member or help the group in keeping with the order.
UK Residence Secretary Suella Braverman instructed the BBC that Wagner was “violent and harmful … a army device of Vladimir Putin’s Russia”.
“They’re terrorists, plain and easy – and this proscription order makes that clear in UK legislation,” she stated.
Proscribing Wagner as a terrorist group would imply it will be a legal offence in Britain to belong to or promote the group, organize or tackle its conferences, and carry its emblem in public.
The Wagner mercenary group was deployed in Ukraine quickly after the Russian invasion final yr.
By December, the group took a central position within the battle for the Ukrainian metropolis of Bakhmut after enlisting hundreds of prisoners in Russian jails to combat for it on entrance traces and till just lately was the mainstay of the Russian offensive.
Britain’s transfer to declare Wagner a terrorist group comes after lawmakers on the International Affairs Committee in July urged extra focused sanctions on what it stated had been a “net of entities” beneath the Wagner Group.
Britain sanctioned Wagner boss Yevgeny Prigozhin in 2020, the Wagner Group as an entire in March 2022, and in July this yr sanctioned people and companies with hyperlinks to the group within the Central African Republic, Mali and Sudan.
Prigozhin died when his personal Embraer jet crashed whereas travelling to St Petersburg from Moscow on Aug. 23. Russia stated it will examine the crash, however no trigger has but been made public.
(Reporting by Lavanya Ahire in Bengaluru; Enhancing by Michael Perry)