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Putin not in attendance at funeral of Wagner group chief Yevgeny Prigozhin

Wagner Mercenary Group leader Yevgeny Prigozhin was buried at a private ceremony in St. Petersburg Tuesday. File Photo by Razgruzka_Vagnera/UPI
Wagner Mercenary Group leader Yevgeny Prigozhin was buried at a private ceremony in St. Petersburg Tuesday. File Photo by Razgruzka_Vagnera/UPI

Aug. 29 (UPI) -- Wanger Mercenary Group chief Yevgeny Prigozhin was buried Tuesday, two months after leading a failed mutiny against the Russian Ministry of Defense.

Prigozhin was killed last Wednesday when his private jet came down over Russia's Tver region.

A onetime Kremlin ally, Prigozhin took over the Russian city of Rostov-on-Don in June and sent his troops towards Moscow, shooting down several Russian military aircraft along the way.

The mutiny came to a halt when Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko agreed to shelter Prigozhin and his men.

Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov said Russian Vladimir Putin would not attend the small ceremony, which was held at St. Petersburg's Prokhovskoye cemetery.

Prigozhin's private jet came down over the Tver region, prompting speculation from supporters and western governments. File Photo by Gray_Zone/UPI
Prigozhin's private jet came down over the Tver region, prompting speculation from supporters and western governments. File Photo by Gray_Zone/UPI

"The president's presence is not envisaged. We don't have any specific information on the funeral," said Peskov.

"Farewell to Yevgeny Prigozhin, in accordance with the wishes of relatives, was held in the presence of only relatives and friends," a Wagner associate said according to the Russian state-backed Tass news agency.

Prior to the funeral Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov said Russian President Vladimir Putin would not attend the ceremony. File Photo by Kremlin POOL/UPI
Prior to the funeral Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov said Russian President Vladimir Putin would not attend the ceremony. File Photo by Kremlin POOL/UPI

"Those wishing to say goodbye can visit the Porokhovskoye cemetery," Prigozhin's associate said.

The cemetery was shut off to the general public by police during the ceremony and images posted online by pro-government media showed images of Prigozhin's headstone.

The Russian state confirmed the death of Prigozhin Sunday via DNA testing of the remains discovered at the crash site.

"As part of the investigation of the plane crash in the Tver region, molecular genetic examination have been completed. According to their results, the identities of all 10 dead were established, they correspond to the list stated in the flight sheet," the Main Investigation Department of the Investigative Commitee of Russia said in a statement Sunday.