Ukraine war: Zelenskyy names 31,000 soldiers killed for first time

For the first time since the start of the war, Kiev has released the number of Ukrainian soldiers killed. About 31,000 Ukrainian fighters died in the war, Zelensky said. However, he did not specify the number of civilians killed.

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Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky announced at a press conference in Kiev that some 31,000 Ukrainian soldiers have been killed since the Russian invasion of Ukraine began.

Zelensky said this was far less than the number given by Russian President Vladimir Putin. However, he has not yet disclosed the number of civilians killed.

“31,000 Ukrainian soldiers were killed in this war,” Zelensky said. “Not 300,000, not 150,000, Putin is spreading his lies. Still, each of these losses is a huge sacrifice for us.”

This is the first time Kiev has released the number of Ukrainian soldiers killed since the start of the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Russian losses may be higher than expected

On the Russian side, the Russian Ministry of Defense reported 6,000 soldiers killed. However, reports from US and British officials estimate the figure to be significantly higher. A US intelligence report released in mid-December 2023 estimated that around 315,000 Russian soldiers had been killed or wounded in Ukraine.

However, the independent Russian news service Mediazona reported that some 75,000 Russian men died in the war in 2022 and 2023. A joint investigation by MediaZona and Medusa, another independent Russian news site, shows that Moscow is losing about 120 men a day.

On February 17, Russian forces captured the eastern Ukrainian city of Avdiivka. Denis Pushilin, head of the Russian-controlled Donetsk region, posted footage of the destroyed city on his Telegram channel. The capture of Avdiivka was Russia's biggest battlefield victory since the Battle of Baghmut.

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