Tanks, armored personnel carriers, and other military hardware have been filmed on the move in the southern Russian city of Rostov-on-Don, according to multiple unverified videos posted on social media.
The extraordinary footage comes after Moscow accused Evgeny Prigozhin, the head of the Wagner Group private military company (PMC), of staging an attempt at an armed insurrection.
One clip released on Saturday morning appears to show two tanks parked in a crossroads while being flanked by several infantrymen. A military truck and armored combat vehicle are seen in the distance. The video was purportedly filmed near the HQ of Russia’s Southern Military District.
Another clip features a column led by a Russian main battle tank and an armored personnel carrier, with several other armored vehicles and pickups loaded with military equipment following behind.
Telegram channel Baza released a video of a long traffic jam to the east of Rostov-on-Don, on the junction with the M-4 highway, which was reportedly closed to civilian traffic.
Several other videos from the city also feature armed men in military uniform patrolling the streets while a pick-up truck blocks the road. The soldiers were reluctant to speak with reporters and would not say whether they belong to Wagner or the Russian army.
The development comes as Russia’s anti-terrorism committee said on Friday that the Federal Security Service (FSB) had opened a criminal investigation into Prigozhin over alleged calls to stage an “armed rebellion.” The authorities were referring to an earlier statement by the PMC head, who accused the Russian military of conducting a deadly missile strike on a Wagner camp. The Defense Ministry in Moscow has denied the allegation, describing it as “an informational provocation.”