Producer of the Russian television station TV Dozhd (Rain) Vasily Polonsky says the three Russian journalists who were killed in the Central African Republic (CAR) managed to record videos of bases of the Russian private military company (PMC) Wagner's mercenaries deployed in Africa.
"They [journalists] went there with a certain task and were fulfilling only this certain task. They managed to record videos of bases of Russia's PMC Wagner. They were researching their topic alone, without deviating. And all they were shooting there was in line with the instructions they got," the Ukrainian news outlet Hromadske quoted Polonsky as saying.
"All journalists and other adequate people have absolutely different views on what has happened there. But most of them agree that it was not robbery or an attack by thieves and local criminals. Everyone agrees it was a planned attack. Yet, I cannot say who was behind it," he added.
As was earlier reported, three Russian nationals – journalist Orkhan Dzhemal, cameraman Kirill Radchenko and director Alexander Rastorguev – were killed in the Central African Republic after their car had been ambushed. The driver survived the incident.
The three men were working on a documentary film about PMC Wagner, a shadowy private military company tied to a wealthy restaurateur turned government contractor named Yevgeny Prigozhin.
Spokesperson for Russia's Foreign Ministry Maria Zakharova stated that the Russian journalists killed in Africa had entered the country as tourists.
CAR authorities admit that militants from the Seleka terrorist alliance could be involved in the killing of the journalists.
The village of Sibut close to which the journalists were killed is a base to a CAR battalion armed by Moscow. There are Russian military instructors in the country as well. Media also reported about the presence of mercenaries of private military firms from Russia.