31,000 Ukrainian troops killed since the start of Russia's full-scale invasion, Zelenskyy says

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy at a press conference in Kyiv, Ukraine, Feb. 25, 2024.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy at a press conference in Kyiv, Ukraine, Feb. 25, 2024. Copyright AP Photo/Evgeniy Maloletka
By AP, Euronews
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The Ukrainian leader would not disclose how many troops have been wounded or are missing.

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Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said Sunday that 31,000 Ukrainian soldiers have been killed in action in the two years since Russia launched its full-scale invasion.

"31,000 Ukrainian military personnel have been killed in this war. Not 300,000, not 150,000, not whatever Putin and his deceitful circle have been lying about. But nevertheless, each of these losses is a great sacrifice for us," Zelenskyy said at the “Ukraine. Year 2024” forum in Kyiv.

The Ukrainian leader did not disclose the number of troops that were wounded or missing.

It is the first time that Kyiv has confirmed the number of its losses since Moscow started the full-scale invasion on Feb. 24, 2022.

Zelenskyy also said that “tens of thousands of civilians” had been killed in occupied areas of Ukraine, but said that no exact figures would be available until the war was over.

“We don’t know how many of our civilians they killed. We don’t,” he said.

It's the first time that Kyiv has confirmed the number of its losses since the start of Russia’s full-scale war against Ukraine on Feb. 24, 2022.

In August 2023, The New York Times reported that Ukrainian forces had suffered 70,000 deaths and between 100,000 and 120,000 injuries since the start of the full-scale war, citing unidentified U.S. officials speaking directly to Times reporters.

Russia has provided few official casualty figures. The most recent data from the Defence Ministry, published in January 2023, pointed to just over 6,000 deaths.

But according to intelligence from the British Defence Ministry, about 350,000 Russian military personnel have been killed or wounded over the past two years, which if correct, would represent more than 80% of the roughly 360,000 troops Russia had before the war.

Independent Russian news outlet Mediazona said Saturday that about 75,000 Russian men died in 2022 and 2023 fighting in the war.

A joint investigation published by Mediazona and Meduza, another independent Russian news site, indicates that the rate of Russia’s losses in Ukraine is not slowing and that Moscow is losing about 120 men a day.

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