Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu’s screen was noticeably absent during the Russian Security Council meeting via video link, in to which President Vladimir Putin announced the imposition of martial law in 4 Ukrainian regions, of which Moscow has officially announced their annexation.
The Kremlin said Shoigu was present, but some were quick to point out that he was not in able to see him on the screen along with the other participants during Putin’s speech, according to the American magazine “Newsweek”.
Prior to the Kremlin’s clarification, Max Seddon, head of the office of the British newspaper Financial Times in Moscow, tweeted: “Kremlin specialists will note that” General Valery “Gerasimov and” National Guard Chief Victor “Zolotov, who did not they are permanent members of the Security Council, they are present, and Shiogo, the permanent member, is not there. “
This comes in a time of growing speculation about Shoigu’s future, especially with the man increasingly criticized for his handling of the war in Ukraine.
Putin used the meeting on Wednesday to announce the signing of a decree clarifying martial law that will apply to the Donetsk, Luhansk, Zaporizhia and Kherson regions.
Putin said at the conference that the decree “will be immediately sent to the Federation Council for approval, while the State Duma (parliament) will be informed of the decision,” according to the Tass news agency.
Shoigu’s absence from the screen at the meeting arrives in one moment in which is under fire in a series of successful Ukrainian counterattacks to recapture the territory captured by Russian forces in the prime phases of the war.
Kirill Strimosov, a Kremlin-installed leader in Kherson, said on 6 October that “incompetent military leaders” were responsible for the withdrawal of Russian forces in the region.
Strimosov said many said Shoigu, the longest serving minister in the Russian government, should have shot himself in the light of the faltering war.
“Many people say that the Minister of Defense, who allowed this situation to happen, can shoot himself as an officer, but as you know the word (official) is difficult for many,” added Strimosov, during a video clip posted on his channel on ” Telegram”.
British intelligence assessed in earlier that Putin consistently mocked Shoigu, while observers claimed he had become a scapegoat for Russian military failures.
It was Putin who chose to appoint Shoigu to the post of defense minister in 2012, despite his lack of military background or combat experience. Man’s most significant challenge was overseeing Russia’s annexation of Crimea in 2014.