Putin meets with top Wagner commander
STORY: Russian President Vladimir Putin was shown on state television on Friday (September 29) meeting Andrei Troshev, one of the most senior former commanders of the Wagner mercenary group - seen here on the right.
They discussed how best to use "volunteer units" in the Ukraine war.
The Kremlin said the meeting took place late on Thursday.
Deputy Defense Minister Yunus-Bek Yevkurov was also present.
The meeting underscored the Kremlin's attempt to show that the state had now gained control over the mercenary group after a failed June mutiny by its boss Yevgeny Prigozhin.
He was killed with other senior commanders in a plane crash in August.
Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov told the RIA news agency that Troshev now worked at the defense ministry.
The fate of Wagner has been unclear since Prigozhin's failed mutiny and his death after which Putin ordered Wagner fighters to sign an oath of allegiance to the Russian state.
A move Prigozhin and many of his men had opposed.
Russia's Kommersant newspaper has reported that just days after the Wagner mutiny Putin had suggested that Troshev take over from Prigozhin.
The meeting also appears to indicate that what remains of Wagner will now be overseen by Troshev and the defense minister.
The Wagner group became best known for its May capture of the Ukrainian city of Bakhmut in the bloodiest battle of the war.
Troshev is a decorated veteran of Russia's wars in Afghanistan and Chechnya.
He is a former commander in the SOBR interior ministry rapid reaction force.
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