Where in the world is Yevgeny Prigozhin?

...and where does he go from here?

Yevgeny Prigozhin
Head of the Wagner Group Yevgeny Prigozhin left the Southern Military District headquarters on June 24, 2023 in Rostov-on-Don, Russia.
(Image credit: Illustrated / Gettyimages)

For a brief moment last month, Yevgeny Prigozhin appeared poised to become one of the most important, powerful people on Earth. After months of dispeptic saber-rattling toward the Kremlin over Russia's ongoing invasion of Ukraine, the man once considered part of Russian Federation President Vladimir Putin's inner circle — dubbed "Putin's Chef" after landing a lucrative government catering contract in the early 2000s — had set his formidable Wagner Group of Russian mercenaries on the march toward Moscow. By all indications, Prigozhin seemed intent on not only deposing members of Putin's cabinet, but perhaps even the president himself, with the aim of replacing him.

One day later, Prigozhin shocked the world by announcing an end to his nascent coup before his Wagner columns had even reached Moscow. In a lengthy and at times contradictory statement, Prigozhin insisted that his goal had never been to "overthrow the current regime" and that his decision to abort his mutinous advance on the Kremlin was simply to "avoid spilling the blood of Russian soldiers." Shortly thereafter, Prigozhin appeared to accept a Kremlin offer to exile himself in neighboring Belarus, seemingly bringing his short-lived aspirations to an ignominious end. In the weeks since, however, that "end" has become a bit more open-ended than previously believed; Prigozhin's future — and even his current whereabouts — are not as final as they once seemed.

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Rafi Schwartz, The Week US

Rafi Schwartz has worked as a politics writer at The Week since 2022, where he covers elections, Congress and the White House. He was previously a contributing writer with Mic focusing largely on politics, a senior writer with Splinter News, a staff writer for Fusion's news lab, and the managing editor of Heeb Magazine, a Jewish life and culture publication. Rafi's work has appeared in Rolling Stone, GOOD and The Forward, among others.