According to the report, in 2014, Intelligence Officer Dmitry Utkin founded the Wagner Group to support Ukrainian separatists. Since then, this group has represented the interests of Russia and its allies from Africa to the Middle East. The group took part in the Syrian Civil War on behalf of President Bashar al-Assad. Wagner’s men have been active in Ukraine, Syria, Libya, the Central African Republic and Mali in recent years. Critics see it as a shadow force controlled by Russian President Vladimir Putin, used to promote Russian interests abroad by providing front-line fighters, trainers and advisers.