According to British estimates, tens of thousands of Russian soldiers and mercenaries have been wounded or killed since the beginning of the war. London attributes the fact that the proportion of those killed is very high to the rudimentary medical care at the front.

According to British estimates, between 175,000 and 200,000 Russian regular army soldiers and fighters from private military companies, so-called PMCs, have been injured or killed since the invasion of Ukraine began, and up to 60,000 of them are believed to have died. The estimates are based on information from the British secret services, said the Ministry of Defense in London in its daily situation report in the morning. According to the ministry, the number of wounded and dead has increased significantly since September 2022, i.e. shortly after the first wave of mobilization.

According to reports, some of the recruited reservists received only rudimentary weapons training and were also said to have been poorly equipped. According to the British report, the ratio of casualties to the number of wounded on the Russian side is very high “by modern standards”. This indicates with high probability that the medical care at the front is “extremely rudimentary”. Among the fighters of the Wagner mercenaries, every second one was wounded or killed. Most injuries were caused by artillery.

Norway had also recently published estimates of wounded or killed Russian soldiers. According to this, 180,000 Russian soldiers were killed or injured in the fighting, and 100,000 soldiers were on the Ukrainian army side. Other Western estimates place 150,000 casualties on each side. Because Russia does not officially publish any figures on its own losses, more precise information is difficult to obtain.

What is clear, however, is that the war in Ukraine has cost Russia far more than previous conflicts. The Soviet Union’s war in Afghanistan from 1979 to 1989 cost the lives of around 15,000 Soviet soldiers. The Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyj also recently referred to the massive losses that Russia suffers every day on the front in eastern Ukraine. This phase must now be used for military successes by the Ukrainian army, he explained: “Our task is to ensure that there (in Russia) there is less and less effort to keep Ukrainian areas occupied.”

After a year of war, the balance sheet for the Ukrainian population is devastating: According to Western sources, between 30,000 and 40,000 civilians have died since February 24, 2022. At the end of January, the UN estimated that at least 18,000 civilians had been killed or wounded, but probably many more in the end. Most were killed by Russian bombing.