Moscow elite panic over tape blowing up Vladimir Putin as ‘Satan’ and ‘dwarf’

Two prominent supporters of Vladimir Putin have been accused of calling the Russian president “Satan” and a “dwarf” in a leaked phone call, sparking a full-blown scandal.

The 35-minute phone call, shared by Ukraine’s Channel Five, is said to be about Russian oligarch and former Senator Farkhad Akhmedov and prominent Moscow music producer Iosif Prigozhin, as they engage in a tirade of obscenities against Putin and his inner circle .

The Russian government “fucked us, our children, their future, their destiny,” Akhmedov allegedly said in the leaked call, referring to the Kremlin’s handling of the war in Ukraine, according to Meduza. “He’s Satan,” he continues about Putin in the phone call, which reportedly took place on Jan. 24.

A significant part of the conversation was devoted to criticizing the Russian president and other members of the Kremlin elite for allegedly using Defense Minister Sergei Soigu as a scapegoat for Moscow’s failure in the war against Ukraine.

Russian music producer Iosif Prigozhin (L) stands next to singer Valeriya at a meeting of the initiative group to nominate Vladimir Putin as a candidate for the 2018 presidential election in Moscow in 2017.

Sergei Karpukhin via Reuters

They call Shoigu “a fool, behind his back, of course,” Prigozhin allegedly complained on the call. “These are the dumbest people. My opinion is simple: they act like kings, like damned gods. They are finished creatures…I have nothing good to say about them. They’re scumbags, dammit.”

“These are cockroaches, dammit, in a jar they’re already nibbling on each other,” added Akhmedov. “They will destroy one, then they will devour each other, they will grab the throat there. They will drown each other.”

Although Prigozhin initially claimed the recording was fake in a video message — suggesting it was the product of “neural networks” that “make it possible to perform miracles,” he later admitted that at least some of the ones on the tape phases to be heard were real.

“The recording is a symbiosis of spoken sentences and those that were generated and never spoken,” Prigozhin told the St. Petersburg edition in a seemingly panicked interview Fontanka, adds that he doesn’t remember the conversation, but that “this whole thing is extremely uncomfortable” for him.

An unnamed source in Russia’s FSB security agency has allegedly confirmed the tape’s authenticity, telling iStories that “the FSB leadership recently held a meeting and instructed subordinates to take action” in relation to the scandal.

Akhmedov, a billionaire, was sanctioned by the European Union in April last year as a close ally of the Kremlin and as a “leading businessman engaged in economic sectors that represent a significant source of revenue for the government of the Russian Federation.” He’s famous for getting his $460 million yacht back after it was frozen in a German port, and is even trying to distance himself from Putin to achieve that goal.

Prigozhin, the famous music producer, is a longtime supporter of the Russian president – at least publicly. “I’m in shock now and I don’t understand how to live with this shit,” he said in his interview with Fontanka after the scandal erupted, in which he described Putin as a “planetary figure.” Moscow elite panic over tape blowing up Vladimir Putin as ‘Satan’ and ‘dwarf’

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