After Prigozhin: The Anatomy Of Russia’s Evolving Private Military And Mercenary Industry – Analysis


By Sergey Sukhankin


Since the beginning of Moscow’s hybrid war against Ukraine in 2014, Russia’s mercenary industry has been regularly evolving. Virtually absent from public discussion until 2018, Russian paramilitary formations began to emerge from the shadows after their involvement in the Libyan Civil War and continued “adventures” in Sub-Saharan Africa (see “War by Other Means”). Analyzing the industry, however, remained taboo for many investigative journalists and experts due to the all-too-real security threats (see Terrorism Monitor, June 26, 2020; see EDM, January 20, 2021May 12, 2021).

In 2022, that all changed when the notorious private military company (PMC), Wagner Group, and its curator, Yevgeny Prigozhin, emerged as rising stars in Russia’s military endeavors. For many Russians, they represented the zenith of wartime “patriotism.” The Kremlin allowed Prigozhin to recruit violent criminals from Russia’s prisons to boost Wagner’s manpower, and the Wagnerites soon became key assault units for offensive operations in Ukraine’s east. This significantly boosted Prigozhin’s confidence and led to an acute conflict with the Russian Ministry of Defense (MoD). The Wagner chief’s increasingly public criticism of the MoD’s failures in Ukraine culminated with his aborted mutiny in June 2023 (see EDM, August 18, 2022, July 11, 2023, July 24, 2023August 3, 2023). In August 2023, Prigozhin died in a mysterious plane crash, with many considering his death as retribution for the rebellion. Prigozhin’s death was followed by a complete subordination of the Wagner Group to the Russian state.

These developments marked the beginning of another transformative period for Wagner and, more generally, the Russian mercenary industry as a whole (see EDM, October 12, 2023). Since the beginning of 2022, paramilitary organizations, including Wagner and others, have become more prominent in the Kremlin’s military planning. Prigozhin’s failed mutiny left a void in the Russian army’s capabilities, which has begun to be filled by other key groups and actors. As Moscow’s war against Ukraine rages on and the Kremlin considers its options for protecting assets in Africa and beyond, it is becoming increasingly critical to paint a more complete picture of the current state of Russia’s mercenary industry. The Russian High Command will likely continue to rely on these groups as central players in the fighting in Ukraine and in Moscow’s ability to project power in the coming years.

Emerging PMCs and Mercenary Formations 

PMC Redut: 

Despite numerous investigations, Redut’s origins remain unclear. Some studies trace its roots to 2006 when a group of veterans of the Foreign Intelligence Service (SVR), Russian Airborne Forces (VDV), the Main Directorate of the Russian General Staff (GRU), and the Internal Troops of the Russian Ministry for Internal Affairs (MVD) formed a consortium of smaller entities—the so-called “anti-terror family”—to perform missions abroad. The company (later renamed “Centre-R”) reportedly carried out operations in Iraq (Kurdistan), Syria, Somalia, and the former Yugoslavia. There is also some evidence that Redut may have worked as a consultant for the military during the Russo-Georgian conflict in August 2008, with company members training the Abkhazian armed forces (see War by Other Means, June 25, 2019). Later, a company with the same name seemingly disappeared and then re-emerged in 2019. Some observers, however, doubt whether this was the same Redut with ties to Russian operations in Syria and to the business interests of Gennady Timchenko, a Russian oligarch and close friend of Russian President Vladimir Putin (, July 28, 2019).

According to Meduza, Redut units were some of the first to enter Ukraine on February 24, 2022 (Meduza, July 13, 2022). These formations took part in the fighting in Kyiv and Kharkiv oblasts (, June 26, 2023). According to Ukrainian intelligence and military experts, Redut was initially employed as an elite force in Ukraine. Yet, due to high casualty rates and rapid attrition, the quality of its units stagnated considerably. Moscow has authorized Redut to recruit prisoners and labor migrants to replenish its units, though it will likely take significant time for the PMC to restore its pre-2022 level of professionalism and capabilities (, April 26, 2023; see EDM, November 8, 2023).

PMC Redut is frequently seen as a replacement for the Wagner Group and is characterized by the following essential features:

  • Large Manpower Reserve: Redut reportedly comprises 7,000–25,000 experienced and battle-hardened mercenaries, likely now on the lower end due to significant losses in Ukraine (com, April 6, 2023).
  • Complex Structure: Redut is not a single entity, unlike the Wagner Group and other known Russian PMCs or mercenary formations, but an umbrella organization that consists of other groups and provides supplies and manpower to other mercenary formations and PMCs. Based on the results of several studies and this author’s research, Redut closely collaborates with at least 20 different entities (the actual number may be higher), including the “Don” brigade, “Listan” battalion, “Skif” battalion, “Wolves” brigade, “Tigers” volunteer formation, “Veter-117” formation, “Nevsky” Group, PMC “Potok,” and related entities (com, October 10, 2023).
  • Multiples Ties to Russian Elites: Redut has reportedly changed its sources of support several times. Having been initially subordinated to Timchenko, the PMC would later become controlled by the GRU (ua, May 29, 2021;, October 10, 2023). Reportedly, when Russia launched its full-scale invasion of Ukraine, Redut remained under the patronage of GRU Lieutenant General Vladimir Alekseyev, who is best known for his unequivocal public condemnation of Prigozhin’s mutiny and his role in the subsequent negotiations with the mutineer. According to most recent reports, Redut is openly characterized as “a recruitment project of the MoD” and “a protégé of the MoD” (, November 12, 2022;, October 23, 2023). Other sources continue labeling the entity as the GRU’s “unofficial army” (, December 1, 2023).

After Prigozhin’s death, one former Wagner commander, Andrey Troshev (“Sedoy”), was said to have abandoned the Wagner Group and has now become one of the leaders of Redut (, November 2, 2023). Troshev reportedly did not support Prigozhin’s rebellion and had openly pledged his allegiance to the Russian MoD. If this information is correct, Redut may emerge as a platform to combine several operational functions, including recruitment, training, and coordination with other quasi-PMC and volunteer formations directly subordinated to the siloviki block.


The first reports about Storm-Z, which predominantly, but not exclusively, consists of criminals and ex-convicts, date back to September 2022. The Russian MoD officially mentioned it for the first time in early 2023. The MoD reportedly formed Storm-Z as an alternative (and, perhaps, a competitor) to the Wagner Group, whose functions would have been similar to those carried out by the Wagnerites during the battles for Soledar and Bakhmut. As open conflict between Prigozhin and the MoD intensified, Storm-Z was openly considered the MoD’s competing project to attract Wagner soldiers to its ranks (, October 4, 2023). According to Ukrainian sources,

Storm-Z companies … are intended to conduct urban combat operations or operations in complicated geographic areas to capture important and strategic objects, such as strongholds, command posts, and communication centers. … The personnel that staff these companies receive 10–15 days of “refresher” training, a remarkably short amount of time to adequately train personnel (even reservists with some experience) to perform complex combat tasks and create unit cohesion (, April 7, 2023).

Storm-Z companies were primarily deployed in the Avdiivka direction, where Southern Military District units eventually wore down the Ukrainians defending the city (, April 7, 2023; Ukrainska Pravda, February 22, 2024). Other sources reported on Storm-Z’s heavy involvement in the fighting around Zaporizhzhia during the Ukrainian summer counteroffensive and near Vuhledar during Russia’s unsuccessful winter offensive (RIA Novosti, July 15, 2023;, June 18, 2023). While various sources report on the formation operating in the Kherson and Bakhmut directions, the Zaporizhzhia front may in fact be Storm-Z’s central area of operations (, October 3, 2023). The group’s growing prominence may be attributed to how locally-based units openly demonstrated loyalty to the MoD and spoke out against Prigozhin’s mutiny, for which Russian officials later rewarded them (, June 25, 2023;, June 26, 2023). According to Ukrainian sources, Storm-Z has suffered significant losses in recent months, essentially operating in the same capacity as Wagner’s stormtroopers did during the Soledar and Bakhmut operations (, October 24, 2023;, November 18, 2023). Analysts disagree on the actual composition of Storm-Z forces. Some sources suggest that the formation almost entirely consists of (ex-)convicts and criminals, while others argue for a more eclectic composition.

The leadership of Storm-Z gives some insights into the group’s composition and confirms reports of Moscow’s increased use of criminals in supplemental units to the official armed forces in Ukraine (see EDM, October 31, 2023; November 8, 2023). A deep search of open-source material from Volgograd reveals that the commander of Strom-Z units in Ukraine is Alietdin “Ali” Makhmudov, a criminal from Volgograd. In 2014, Makhmudov was sentenced to almost 18 years in prison for organizing the assassination of a criminal authority in Volgograd (, November 3, 2023). Most likely, he was pardoned after volunteering to fight in Ukraine. In 2023, Makhmudov was spotted in the Russian State Duma having a meeting with Andrey Lugovoy, a representative of the Liberal Democratic Party of Russia (LDPR) and the suspected murderer of Alexander Litvinenko. Lugovoy was also once a KGB and, later, an FSB officer (, November 3, 2023).

Storm-Z will likely play two primary roles in future Russian military operations. First, the MoD may employ the group as “cannon fodder” and a replacement for the Wagner Group in “laying siege” to Ukrainian cities. Second, Makhmudov’s Duma meeting with a prominent LDPR representative suggests that some political elites may want to deepen their ties with the group, especially given its connections to the criminal world. Strom-Z, however, is unlikely to reach the same level of importance and sophistication as Wagner in the near future.

The Wagner Group:

Largely due to Prigozhin’s mutiny and its operations in Africa, Wagner is the most well-known PMC in Russia. Directly following the failed rebellion, Prigozhin declared,

At the moment, we are not planning to open recruitment centers. To avoid any talks and rumors, I am stating that the Wagner Group continues its activities in Africa and recruitment centers in Belarus. … As of now, we are not experiencing any deficit with the quantity of personnel we have. Thus, we are not planning any new recruitment campaigns (RBC, July 31, 2023).

He hinted at plans to continue operations outside of Russia, with Sub-Saharan Africa becoming the focal point of Wagner’s activities (see EDM, August 16, 2023).

During his final days, Prigozhin was spotted at the Russia-Africa Summit in July 2023 taking pictures with the ambassador of the Central African Republic (CAR) to Russia and the head of Afrique Media, a multi-lingual, pro-Russian information channel (RBC, July 27, 2023). According to Russian media, he also met with representatives from Mali and Niger, which recently suffered a military coup with the reported participation of Wagner forces (, July 27, 2023; Meduza, August 9, 2023; Africanews, August 9, 2023).

Everything changed after Prigozhin’s demise. Wagner has essentially disappeared from public view. In terms of its current operations, two developments should be highlighted. Domestically, most of Wagner’s rank-and-file and its commanding personnel have signed contracts with the Russian MoD (RIA Novosti, October 5, 2023). In October 2023, Meduza reported that Moscow would allow the group to continue running its recruitment centers under the umbrella of Rosgvardia (Russian National Guard) (Meduza, November 1, 2023).

Internally, the Wagner Group has gone through serious structural changes. The group may have been split into two or three parts—depending on whether Troshev has joined PMC Redut—to conduct operations both domestically and abroad. According to ultra-conservative Russian military expert Colonel (ret.) Victor Litovkin, Wagner is being restructured. Its name, officially “PMC Wagner,” will likely forfeit the “PMC” designation. The structure will be directly subordinated to the Russian MoD. Based on numerous Telegram posts, Litovkin asserts that Wagner could be divided into three parts, each headed by a separate commander with “collegiality in decision-making likely to be preserved.” Troshev will most likely oversee operations in Ukraine. Anton Elizarov (“Lotos”) and Pavel Prigozhin (Yevgeny’s son) are the leading candidates to be charged with command of operations in Africa or the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) (, October 2, 2023).

Another important yet unclear aspect of Wagner’s future is the group’s ties to Russian Deputy Defense Minister Yunus-bek Yevkurov. Some sources suggest that Yevkurov will be asked to oversee Wagner’s “foreign ties” with Russia’s external partners and clients (RIA Novosti, October 1, 2023). His recent tour across the MENA region and parts of Sub-Saharan Africa, including Burkina Faso, Mali, and the CAR, strengthens this possibility. During the tour, the deputy defense minister emphasized Russia’s strategic interest in collaborating with these countries in several military-technical, economic, and nuclear capacities (, September 3, 2023).

All this underscores the reality that the Wagner Group will not be disbanded entirely. The group, however, will likely continue to disappear from public view, returning to the status it enjoyed before Russia’s expanded invasion of Ukraine in 2022. The Kremlin initially used Wagner as a tool of power projection in the resource-endowed, politically tumultuous countries of MENA and Sub-Saharan Africa, often acting in the shadows. Thus, the group’s veiled role in Russia’s external operation is likely to grow in the near term. At the time of writing, it is still unclear how Prigozhin’s “legacy” in Africa, especially the CAR (frequently dubbed Wagner’s “African laboratory”), will be restructured and divided between the other MoD-controlled PMCs (see EDM, September 6, 2023). Western media recently reported on Wagner undergoing a “rebranding” in Africa (BBC, February 19). Fundamentally, the group will be one of several Russian paramilitary entities operating on the continent. The Kremlin will not allow for its monopoly on power and the use of force to be in the hands of one semi-independent actor. Thus, Wagner is likely to remain one of several Russian actors in Africa under the close supervision of the MoD.

Patriot PMC:

The beginning of Patriot’s story dates back to 2018 when the All-Russian Officers’ Assembly released the draft analysis of the heavy casualties the Wagner Group had suffered in Syria after engaging with US forces near Deir ez-Zor. The document listed the previously unknown Patriot PMC. In addition to Syria, Patriot is said to have operated in parts of Sub-Saharan Africa.

Based on research conducted by this author in 2018, Patriot PMC was described as a more “elite” mercenary group than Wagner. As a result, Patriot’s units were not to be employed as stormtroopers in frontal attacks against enemy forces, lest they suffer heavy losses (akin to the Wagnerites in Syria). Operationally, the PMC seemed to perform functions similar to traditional Western private military and security companies (PMSC) in its foreign operations. Patriot was also considered a project of the MoD and designed to compete with the Wagner Group for primacy in Moscow’s power projection abroad (see EDM, August 1, 2018).

For some time, Patriot disappeared from public space. Following Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine, the PMC began to reappear in front-line reports. In December 2022, Patriot units were spotted in Vuhledar. Some outlets connected the PMC to Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu and identified the group as a direct competitor to Wagner (Ukrainska Pravda, December 28, 2022). Serhiy Cherevatyi, spokesman for Ukraine’s eastern grouping of forces, confirmed Patriot units took part in Russia’s Vuhledar operation between October and December 2022, suffering hefty losses. Cherevatyi also claimed that Patriot and Wagner were essentially competing with one another and performing multiple tasks along the entire front (, December 28, 2022).

Since then, Patriot seems to have returned to the shadows. Given that the PMC was a creation of the Russian MoD from the very beginning, it was likely designed to conduct primarily foreign operations. It will either be used as a standalone unit for future external operations or be integrated into a more extensive formation, such as Redut.

Combat Army Reserve (BARS):

The emergence of the BARS structure goes back to 2014–15, when Russia was only beginning its invasion of Ukraine (, August 11, 2022). By 2021, BARS reportedly consisted of tens of thousands of reservists (the exact number is unknown) whose training, special skills, and level of professionalism were somewhat questionable (, September 7, 2021). From a legal point of view, the status of BARS members is blurred. While contracts are signed with the military commissariat under the jurisdiction of the MoD, recruits do not automatically obtain the status of a member of the Russian Armed Forces, essentially remaining “volunteers.” BARS formations were deployed against Ukrainian forces during the summer of 2022 (, August 18, 2022).

Russian sources indicate a highly cumbersome structure for BARS, including up to 20 different groups and battalions whose allegiances frequently overlap. They also show a relatively low level of preparedness and professionalism among the reservists (BBC, November 20, 2023). According to available information, members of BARS have frequently been involved in legal disputes related to compensation for participation in military operations and the injuries (or deaths) of personnel sustained during hostilities. These disputes likely originate from BARS’s unclear legal status and the low level of professionalism of reservist units (, August 10, 2022).

Moscow may view the BARS project as a temporary solution to its predicaments by recruiting more personnel to replenish the heavily depleted front-line ranks in Ukraine. Regarding operational capacity, one might think of BARS as being designed to be analogous to the Wagner Group during the Soledar and Bakhmut operations. Yet, given the blurred status of BARS in the Russian military’s hierarchy and its poorly trained personnel, it is hard to imagine that, unless Moscow becomes increasingly desperate, these reserve forces will be assigned critical operational tasks along the Ukrainian front.

Private Armies of Oligarchs and Russian State Corporations

Russia’s war against Ukraine launched the “privatization of force” in Russia. That process accelerated with the conventional army’s lack of success in Ukraine and the growing prominence of Prigozhin and Wagner. The privatization of force reflects attempts by some elements of Russian society to boost their status in the state’s “vertical of power” by establishing a paramilitary wing to their capabilities (See EDM, February 27, 2023, February 28, 2023). According to the Main Directorate of Intelligence of the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense (GUR), Gazprom-sponsored “Potok” and “Fakel” are the most prominent mercenary formations sponsored by Russian state corporations (, February 7, 2023). Some Russian outlets, however, argue that these two groups have mixed allegiance, also being subordinated to the MoD (, June 22, 2023). In April 2023, the investigative outlet Conflict Intelligence Team named “Plamia” as another Gazprom-related paramilitary structure (, April 25, 2023). At the time of writing, it remains unclear whether Gazprom fully controls Potok, Fakel, and Plamia. Akin to Wagner, these mercenary formations are likely operated by both Gazprom, overseeing the financial side of operations, and the MoD, providing training, equipment, and, potentially, personnel (, April 28, 2023).

Oleg Deripaska, who was once Russia’s richest person and who essentially owns leading global aluminum producer RUSAL, reportedly has two mercenary formations at his disposal—“Sokol” and “Sokol-2” (Meduza, July 24, 2023). Russian oligarchs have commonly used private armies as the “muscle” in their domestic struggle for power. For example, PMC Shield allegedly belongs to the oil and gas engineering construction company OAO Stroytransgaz, which is 80-percent-owned by Timchenko. Some of its members were reportedly killed in Syria in 2019. With the ongoing militarization of Russian society, this trend could potentially have far greater consequences for Russia in the case of a partial or complete paralysis of the central authorities’ monopoly over the use of force (Sergey Sukhankin and Alla Hurska, “Russia’s Private Military Contractors: Cause for Worry?,” Canadian Military Journal; see EDM August 7, 2019).

As for the role of “private armies” in Ukraine, three interim conclusions can be made. First, their input and actual achievements have been marginal, and those minimal successes have upset the Kremlin. The participation of private armies in the war has turned the Russian Armed Forces into a “patchwork of loosely coordinated formations” rather than strengthening their capabilities and overall performance. Third, Moscow remains reliant on these formations as a means to avoid large-scale forced mobilization and induce widespread unrest and criticism of the Russian political leadership (, June 2, 2023). The crowds of Russians who turned out to mourn the late oppositionist Alexei Navalny have likely enflamed the Kremlin’s fears of growing public discontent (The Moscow Times, March 1).

The ‘Governors’ Armies’

Crimea-Based Formations (“Aksionovtsy”): The most well-known entities of this type are PMC “Konvoy” and the “Livadia” battalion. These formations are nominally subordinated to Sergey “Goblin” Aksyonov, the Moscow-appointed head of illegally annexed Crimea. Russian sources claim that Konvoy is essentially part of the BARS system. When recruits join Konvoy, they sign two contracts: one with the PMC itself and another with the Russian MoD. Some Konvoy commanders are reportedly former members of the Wagner Group (, March 23, 2023).

While these formations are formally subordinated to the Russian MoD, three critical factors tie them informally to Crimea’s Kremlin-appointed officials. First, Konvoy and Livadia consist entirely of Russian residents of the peninsula. As a result, there may be a bond between Aksyonov, who has lived in Crimea since 1989, and these mercenary formations based on a sense of “local patriotism” and self-identification. Second, investigative journalists have claimed that funds from the Crimean government’s budget, largely controlled by Aksyonov, finance these groups’ operations. This link strengthens direct ties between Konvoy and Livasdia and the Moscow-appointed head of Crimea (, March 22, 2023). Third, Aksyonov has been vigorously using local, Kremlin-backed information resources, such as the television channel Krym-24, to run recruitment campaigns and entice locals to join Konvoy (BBC, November 20, 2023).

Although difficult to ascertain, the professionalism and preparedness of these mercenary formations highlight their potential role in future operations. Earlier reports confirm these structures possess heavy armor and modern electronic warfare capabilities. This aspect might contribute to these formations taking on a more mechanized component (, March 16, 2023). Some outlets have reported that Konstantin Pikalov, one of Prigozhin’s closest associates who reportedly oversaw Wagner’s operations in Africa, was spotted training with Konvoy in early 2023 (, March 23, 2023). The chance that some former Wagnerites have or will join these Crimea-based mercenary entities points to a high level of professionalism and preparedness to take on more complicated tasks.

Belgorod-Based Territorial Defense Units: Between December 2022 and July 2023, at least two new regiments (eight battalions) of Russia’s Territorial Defense Forces were formed (RIA Novosti, July 5, 2023). The local governor of Belgorod Oblast, Viacheslav Gladkov, led these efforts (, January 16, 2023). Earlier, Gladkov allegedly had been in conflict with Prigozhin regarding the construction of fortifications in the region. The governor proposed creating a zasechnaya cherta (a series of fortifications established in medieval Moskovia to defend against the Mongol invaders) on the border between Belgorod Oblast and Ukraine (RBC, December 6, 2022).

The Belgorod-based territorial defense units are unlikely to become corollaries to the Crimea- or Chechnya-based paramilitary formations. This is premised on two main pillars. First, Gladkov’s personality, career, and life experience drastically differ from that of former gangster Aksyonov and Chechen warlord Ramzan Kadyrov (Meduza, June 8, 2023). Most likely, the governor’s paramilitarization of Belgorod is part of a public relations campaign to consolidate support and demonstrate to Moscow his tact in managing the situation along Belgorod’s border with Ukraine. Second, based on available information, the low level of training and lack of adequate material-technical equipment of the territorial defense units mean they would be unable to undertake any serious operations (, July 25, 2023; Meduza, August 2, 2023). For now, these formations should be viewed as image-building tools for local political elites rather than serious paramilitary forces.

Kursk-Based Units: In December 2022, paramilitary formations began to be created under the name of Patriot (a separate volunteer formation). Their primary task was to control the border area between Russia and Ukraine (TASS, December 7, 2022). Before his unsuccessful mutiny, Prigozhin had reportedly established cordial ties with the governor of Kursk Oblast, Roman Starovoyt, who reportedly trained with Wagner (, January 8, 2023). As of February 2023, the overall number of Kursk-based territorial defense units stood at 2,000, three times fewer than their number when they were first created. Little data is available on the level of professionalism and training, composition of forces, or equipment of these units (, February 27, 2023).


On October 19, 2022, Putin authorized the creation of territorial defense units consisting of volunteer units in the Central and South federal districts (, July 25, 2023). Kursk and Belgorod oblasts took the lead in setting up these forces and were later followed by other Russian regions beyond the initially declared geographic zone. Soon, the regions of Voronezh (“The Peoples Territorial Defense of Voronezh”), Orel (“The Katukov`s Brigade”), and Pskov (“The Squad of Alexander Nevsky”) declared the creation of their own territorial defense units (, June 11, 2023;, June 19, 2023).

While the actual level of training, equipment, and preparedness of these formations is questionable, their continued development could take two different but not necessarily mutually exclusive paths. First, these entities could be further integrated into the Russian Armed Forces in a similar capacity as BARS, potentially upgrading their operational capabilities. Second, in the case of further internal destabilization in Russia, these formations could be used by local elites in their struggle for political power and to protect their business interests—similar to the late 1980s and early 1990s when demobilized soldiers from Afghanistan and Chechnya, respectively, were employed by Russian oligarchs and state officials for personal gain, usually by violent means.

The “privatization of force” and emergence of new mercenary groups in Russia will inevitably lead to the further paramilitarization of society. As Russian forces trade heavy losses for symbolic gains on the Ukrainian battlefield, Moscow will be forced to focus more on maintaining order domestically as the war steadily disrupts the Russian home front. In this, the Kremlin finds itself stuck between two competing realities. On the one hand, the thorough degradation and demoralization of the Russian military in Ukraine is forcing Moscow to increasingly rely on PMCs and other mercenary structures to reinforce the frontlines and project power abroad. On the other hand, the proliferation of these mercenary structures and their competing allegiances may soon threaten the Putin regime’s hold on power, especially if the “special military operation” continues to go poorly and protest sentiments intensify and spread more widely. As the Russian state begins to unravel, Ukraine’s victory over the occupation forces and the restoration of its full territorial integrity would likely serve to accelerate that process.

  • About the author: Dr. Sergey Sukhankin is a Senior Fellow at The Jamestown Foundation, and an Advisor at Gulf State Analytics (Washington, D.C.). He received his PhD in Contemporary Political and Social History from the Autonomous University of Barcelona. His areas of interest include Kaliningrad and the Baltic Sea region, Russian information and cyber security, A2/AD and its interpretation in Russia, the Arctic region, and the development of Russian private military companies since the outbreak of the Syrian Civil War. He has consulted or briefed with CSIS (Canada), DIA (USA), and the European Parliament. His project discussing the activities of Russian PMCs, “War by Other Means,” informed the United Nations General Assembly report entitled “Use of Mercenaries as a Means of Violating Human Rights and Impeding the Exercise of the Right of Peoples to Self-Determination.” He is based in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.
  • Source: This article was published by The Jamestown Foundation

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