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Putin braces for coup as 'disgruntled' top Russian generals turn on Kremlin chief


Vladimir Putin could face a Kremlin coup as Russia continues to falter in the face of fierce resistance in Ukraine. Andrei Soldatov, a leading Russian investigative journalist with sources inside the Russian secret service, told Channel 4 News that everything is becoming possible in the wake of the invasion. Mr Soldatov revealed earlier this week that President Putin had placed the head of the FSB’s foreign service under house arrest as Kremlin blame-game began. 

It appeared that President Putin blamed the FSB, the post-Soviet successor to the KGB, for giving him false projections of how the war in Ukraine would go.

The FSB security service had apparently told the Russian President that Ukraine was weak and would give up easily if invaded.

This follows claims from Oleksiy Danilov, head of Ukraine’s security council, that “around eight” Russian commanders have been sacked since the start of the conflict.

Speaking to Matt Frei on Channel 4 News, Mr Soldatov said: “Putin has become very unhappy with the military intelligence coming from Ukraine.

“It looks like it has dawned on Putin that there is no credible opposition in Ukraine to the Kyiv government. He cannot rely on anyone in Ukraine.”

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The investigative journalist said that the military officials in Ukraine were too afraid to tell President Putin the truth.

He continued: “He believes he is the most informed politician in the world.

“He loves to boast of his knowledge of geopolitics. So it is difficult to tell him something he doesn’t want to hear.

“We do not have anyone on the ground in Ukraine in charge, any general.

“We only have people in Moscow talking about how the war should be conducted. The entire chain of command is getting really weird.”

The remarks echo comments made by Russia’s first post-Soviet foreign minister Andrei Kozyrev, who told The Times this week that the Russian leader was risking a Kremlin coup.

He said: “With Putin, I very much expect there to be resistance growing and discontent growing that will be resolved one way or another.”

This weekend ordinary Russians took to the streets again to protest the war in Ukraine.

Protests erupted in more than 37 cities across Russia for the third weekend in a row as anger builds inside the country against the war and its leader President Vladimir Putin.

Since Russia launched its invasion, more than 14,200 people have been arrested in Russia for taking part in anti-war protests.

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