Former Russian politicians and anti-Putin activists have been gathering in Poland to plot ways to remove Russian President Vladimir Putin from office, including by staging a coup that would involve “physically eliminating” him, according to multiple reports.
The figures have discussed different ways of regime change, including putting together an armed group to kill Putin and fomenting civil war in Russia, according to European media network Euractiv.
“The main goal is to physically eliminate Putin,” said opposition activist Viacheslav Maltsev, who fled Russia in 2017.
According to Maltsev, a Russian civil war would not be “as bloody as the war in Ukraine.”
A second member of the group, an ex-Russian politician who did not wish to be named, argued that “the fight against terrorists requires terrorist methods.”
The group most recently met in Jablonna, near Warsaw, where they were hosted by Ilya Ponomarev, a former Russian State Duma member reportedly responsible for an emerging resistance movement over the last several months, the New York Post reported.
The meetings in Poland are taking place as an increasing number of voicing are growing fatigued by Russia’s Ukraine war, which has been criticized by a wide array of Russian society, from soldiers to municipal politicians in Moscow and St. Petersburg, who have risked prison and large fines to speak out.