UKRAINE: Nearly 9,000 Ukrainian soldiers have been killed in the war with Russia, the head of Ukraine’s armed forces said on Monday.
The toll issued by General Valery Zaluzhnyi appeared to be the first given by Ukraine’s military elite since the February 24 Russian invasion.
Zaluzhnyi, the commander-in-chief of Ukraine’s armed forces, made the statement during the conference to honour military veterans and families of those killed that children needed protection in several parts of the country, including the capital, Kyiv.
“They don’t understand anything that’s going on and they need protection … because their father has gone to the front and maybe he’s among the almost 9,000 heroes that have been killed,” he said.
Zaluzhnyi gave no details and did not say whether the figure he cited included all personnel killed in action, such as border guards. President Volodymyr Zelenskyi told the conference that about 1 million people are defending Ukraine as part of the Ukrainian Armed Forces or other services.
Zaluzhnyi did not say how many civilians were killed or how much Russian personnel estimated were killed in the fighting, but the General Staff of the Ukrainian Armed Forces put the number of Russian military casualties at 45,400. Russia did not say how many of its troops were killed. Read more
Reuters was unable to verify casualties suffered by both sides during what Russia says is a “special military operation” to demilitarize its smaller neighbour and protect Russian-speaking communities. Ukraine and its Western backers accuse Moscow of waging an imperial-style war of conquest.