Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered the invasion of Ukraine nine months ago. Tens of thousands of people are now dead.
This week, the European news outlet Euractiv reported a group of anti-Russian activists and former Russian lawmakers have been meeting for months, discussing various ways of removing Putin from office. Euractiv reported the anti-Putin group discussed several scenarios that would result in a regime change in Russia, including taking up arms and assassinating Putin.
According to Polish media, the main goal of the group is to physically eliminate the Russian leader. One former Russian lawmaker likened the Putin regime to a terrorist organization, and said “the fight against terrorists requires terrorist methods.”
Not everyone in the group is in favor of a bloody coup to overthrow Putin. Some said the 70-year-old Russian leader should be arrested and tried in an international court for war crimes. There is growing opposition to the Ukraine war in Russia. Army conscripts, former Putin allies and some local politicians in Moscow are all publicly taking a stand against the invasion of Ukraine.
Russians speaking out against Putin can face dire consequences, and there’s a long history of opponents dying mysteriously. The chairman of Russia’s largest oil company died when he fell out a hospital window in September. He had been speaking out against the war in Ukraine.
Ukraine’s Ministry of Defense reported this week more than 77,000 Russian soldiers have been killed in Ukraine since February.