Prigozhin says Kremlin banned reporting about him on state media
Russia's most powerful mercenary said on Sunday he was convinced that senior Kremlin officials had banned reporting about him on state media, cautioning that such a misleading approach would lead to a backlash from the Russian people within months.
Yevgeny Prigozhin, founder of the Wagner mercenary group, is the most striking member of President Vladimir Putin's circle to gain widespread notoriety in the 15-month war in Ukraine.
Prigozhin, a restaurateur who quipped last week that his nickname should be "Putin's butcher" rather than "Putin's chef", took the Ukrainian city of Bakhmut earlier this month but his role in the victory was played down on state television.
The 61-year-old has made a name for himself by imposing brutal discipline on his mercenaries and by using obscene language and prison slang to insult Putin's top military brass including Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu.
In a sign of just how far Prigozhin is perceived to have breached the taboos of Putin's Russia, state television ignored the fall of Bakhmut for 20 hours, and did not air Prigozhin's victory speech.