Foreign Minister Antonio Tajani had previously made similar accusations. Yevgeny Prigozhin, founder of a private military company, denies the allegations.
“The exponential increase in migration from African shores is also largely part of a clear hybrid warfare strategy that the Wagner division … is implementing by using its significant weight in some African countries,” Mr. Crosetto said in a comment (quoted by AFP). In his opinion, the EU, NATO and the West, who previously realized that “cyber attacks were part of a global confrontation”, must now understand that “the South European front is also becoming more dangerous every day.”
The press service of Mr. Prigozhin posted his audio commentary on his Telegram channel: “We don’t know at all what is happening with the migration crisis and we don’t deal with it. We have a lot of things to do.” He spoke abusive words against Monsieur Crosetto. The founder of Wagner PMC urged the minister to “look around less, deal with your own problems.”
More than 20,000 migrants landed on the coast of the country this year, according to the Italian Interior Ministry. During the same period in 2022, 6,000 migrants arrived in Italy. The Italian Foreign Minister previously claimed that many people arrive in Europe from areas where Wagner PMCs operate.