In a collaborative effort between Mediazona, a Russian independent media outlet, and BBC Russia, the names of 37,052 Russian soldiers who have lost their lives since the start of Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February 2022 have been officially confirmed through open-source research.
Since the previous update on November 3, the list of casualties has seen an addition of nearly 1,300 Russian soldiers. However, it is important to note that these figures are likely underestimated, as they are based on information obtained from public sources such as obituaries, posts by relatives, regional media reports, and local authorities.
The number of obituaries being tracked by the media has surged in recent weeks, with an average of 100-110 cases of killed soldiers being discovered daily. Mediazona attributes this increase to the Russian army’s efforts to capture Avdiivka. The media outlet states, “We observe numerous obituaries mentioning Avdiivka as the place of death, while others are clearly related to Avdeevka, even if the place of death is not specified.”
In the latest update, 14 names of high-ranking officers, holding the rank of lieutenant colonel or higher, were added to the casualty list. Mediazona highlights that this almost sets an all-time record. The rise in casualties among officers is reminiscent of the losses sustained during the summer of 2022, which coincided with Ukraine’s initial deployment of long-range HIMARS missiles. The recent spike in officer casualties may be linked to Ukraine receiving ATACMS missiles.
Interestingly, most of these higher-ranking officers were not killed in strikes on headquarters but rather at the front lines, often serving as commanders of battalions or Storm Z units, a private military company established by Russia’s Defense Ministry.
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