For more than 24 hours, the head of Wagner's Russian private army, Yevgeny Prigozhin, has kept Russia in suspense with his uprising against the leadership in Moscow. Here is the sequence of the most important events:
Friday, JUNE 23:
9:09 p.m. (local time): Wagner boss Yevgeny Prigozhin sent a first voice message with serious allegations on his channel in the Telegram messenger service. Wagner camps in the hinterland were attacked with rockets, artillery and helicopters. Many fighters were killed.
9:25 p.m.: Prigozhin says the council of Wagner commanders has decided that those in charge of military leadership must be stopped.
9:48 p.m .: The Russian Ministry of Defense denies an attack on Wagner troops on its Telegram channel. That is untrue and a provocation.
9:49 p.m.: Prigozhin explains that he has 25,000 men under his command who now have to explain why such arbitrariness prevails in the country. "Whoever tries to resist us will be considered a threat and will be killed immediately."
Around 11:00 p.m.: The FSB secret service initiates investigations into Prigozhin for attempted armed uprising. According to the Kremlin, President Vladimir Putin has been informed.
10:39 p.m.: Prigozhin declares that it is not a military coup but a “march of justice”.
SATURDAY 24 JUNE:
12:09 a.m .: The Prosecutor General’s Office reports that Prigozhin faces 12 to 20 years in prison.
Approximately 12:15 a.m.: State television broadcasts an extra edition of the news. It announces that Prigozhin has fallen from grace and is being arrested.
Circa 00:30: Armored vehicles appear in downtown Moscow. Important facilities are placed under increased surveillance. Similar reports are also coming from Rostov-on-Don.
Around 1:30 a.m.: The FSB calls on the Wagner fighters to arrest their boss.
02:00: The important army general Sergei Surovikin sides with the power apparatus in Moscow. He calls on Prigozhin to end the fight.
2:03 a.m.: Prigozhin announces that his fighters have crossed the border towards Rostov-on-Don. The border guards hugged their men.
3:46 a.m .: The governor of the Rostov region calls on the population to keep calm and stay at home.
Around 5 a.m.: Videos appear on social media of Wagner fighters surrounding an army headquarters in Rostov-on-Don and pointing heavy military equipment at it.
6:04 a.m .: Moscow Mayor Sergey Sobyanin puts "anti-terrorist measures" in place to prevent terrorist attacks. The administration advises against driving in the south.
7:30 a.m.: Prigozhin declares that his troops have occupied important military installations in Rostov, including the army's regional headquarters - important for the war in Ukraine - and the airfield.
9:04 a.m .: The Ministry of Defense calls on the Wagner fighters to give up. They were drawn into a "criminal adventure" by Prigozhin.
10 a.m.: In a five-minute TV speech, Putin announced that "traitors" would be punished - without naming Prigozhin. He calls on the Wagner fighters to stop criminal activities, but also confirms the blockade of important objects in Rostov.
11:00 a.m.: Prigozhin contradicts Putin. His men are "patriots". The Wagner mercenaries would continue their fight and would not surrender under any circumstances.
11:42 a.m .: Authorities report fighting in the Voronezh region in the southwest, on the way from Rostov to the capital Moscow.
Around 2 p.m.: The head of the Russian republic of Chechnya, Ramzan Kadyrov, announces that he will send his own troops to support the Kremlin.
Around 3 p.m.: The Kremlin rejects speculation that Russian President Vladimir Putin is said to have left Moscow.
6:15 p.m .: Moscow Mayor Sobyanin declares Monday a non-working day for security reasons.
6.30 p.m .: Videos show that a checkpoint was set up on the ring road because of the advance of the Wagner men towards Moscow.
Approximately 6:45 p.m .: According to Russian authorities, Wagner mercenaries are in the Lipetsk region – halfway to Moscow. The governor is asking residents not to leave their homes.
Approx. 8:15 p.m .: The press service of the Belarusian ruler Alexander Lukashenko surprisingly announces that Prigozhin has been persuaded to give up.
8:25 p.m.: Prigozhin confirmed in a voice message that he was stopping the advance towards Moscow. His men came up to 200 kilometers from the capital. "Our columns turn around and go in the opposite direction back to the encampments."
Around 11:00 p.m.: The Kremlin announces that the criminal case against Prigozhin has been dropped. The Wagner boss himself will go to Belarus.