President Biden on Wednesday suggested Russian President Vladimir Putin could be behind the plane crash in Russia that had Wagner Group chief Yevgeny Prigozhin listed as a passenger.
“There’s not much that happens in Russia that Putin’s not behind,” Biden told reporters.
“But I don’t know enough to know the answer. I’ve been working out for the last hour and a half,” he added.
The president was briefed on the crash shortly after Russian media outlets confirmed Prigozhin was on the passenger list, as well as nine other people, who were all reportedly killed.
State-run media service TASS reported the plane crashed in the Tver region, about 100 miles northwest of Moscow. The plane was a business jet on its way from Moscow to St. Petersburg, according to reports.
The Hill has not confirmed the authenticity of the reports or that Prigozhin was aboard the plane.
Biden — who is on vacation in Lake Tahoe, which spans California and Nevada — also reminded reporters of his previous remarks about Prigozhin following the so-called “March of Justice” that aimed to topple Moscow’s military leadership earlier this summer.
“You may recall, when I was asked about this by you, I said I’d be careful what I rode in. I don’t know for a fact what happened, but I’m not surprised,” Biden said.
Biden in July said, “If I were he, I’d be careful what I ate,” referring to Prigozhin.
“I would keep an eye on my menu,” Biden added at the time.
Adrienne Watson, spokesperson for the White House National Security Council, earlier Wednesday said no one should be surprised if the reports are true.
“We have seen the reports,” Watson wrote on X. “If confirmed, no one should be surprised.”