British intelligence reports sharp reduction in recruitment of prisoners in Wagner PMC in Russia
The scale of the recruitment program of convicts to the Russian private military company (PMC) Wagner has probably significantly decreased compared to the peak period between the summer and autumn of 2022, according to a defense intelligence report published on Twitter by the Ministry of Defense of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland on Friday morning.
“According to he Russian Federal Penal Service (FSIN) figures released on 31 January 2023 reported a national penal population of 433,000, suggesting a decrease of 6,000 inmates since November 2022. In contrast, FSIN data had indicated a decrease of 23,000 from September to November 2022. Wagner recruitment was likely a major contributing factor to this drop,” the message reads.
Also, they note that “anecdotal evidence from Ukrainian combatants over the last ten days suggests a reduced Russian reliance on human wave style assaults by Wagner convict fighters in key sectors.”
“Significant tensions between Wagner and the Russian Ministry of Defence are playing out in public; competition between factions in the Russian elite is likely to be partially responsible for the reduced supply of convicts,” the British Intelligence reports.