Espreso. Global

"Definitely not 47,000": military expert on Russian losses in Avdiivka

21 February, 2024 Wednesday

Analyzing the losses of the Russian military in Avdiivka, expert and former Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) officer Ivan Stupak stressed the importance of the information accuracy and its impact on public opinion, pointing out the possibility of misinterpreting large numbers

He stated this on Espreso TV.

"I saw it too optimistically, honestly, I'm not trying to scare people, but it looks very optimistic. What confused me, what do I disagree with? The losses of Russians near Avdiivka, they are definitely not 47,000. It is important to say this because Ukrainians may have such thoughts, that is, almost 50,000 were killed, which is 10% of what they have. This would be wrong, it would be misleading," Stupak explained.

According to him, there are three figures that represent the probable losses of the Russian army in the four-month active phase of the Avdiivka defense operation.

"The first, very conservative and very cautious figure is 4,000 Russians who, excuse me, are firmly embedded in Ukrainian soil, they will not return, even if they are covered with holy water or some relics of Russian saints. There is a more optimistic figure - 13,000 Russian soldiers. That is, 4,000, 13,000 - it's obviously impossible to count, because the fighting is very active," the military expert explained. 

"The Russians themselves, the Russian military correspondent who runs the public account "We hear from Yanina", committed suicide today and before that he mentioned the figure of 16,000 Russians who laid down their lives in Avdiivka. Until now, they could not even show this city on a map without a mistake, and they gave their lives there."

Stupak stressed that the 47,000 figure may be true if we count not only the dead, but also the lightly, moderately, and severely wounded, missing, and those who were taken prisoner by Ukrainians: "That is, plus or minus such a figure can draw - it is important to note and say this so as not to mislead Ukrainians, so that they can correctly assess the situation."

He emphasized that an important aspect of our struggle is the assistance from the United States.

"The United States has already informed Ukraine that if we fail to agree on aid, you, the Ukrainians, will have to decide which cities will have to be left to the Russians because the aid is not coming. Since October, President Biden has been persuading congressmen to vote, but we were expecting in December, before the Christmas holidays, then right after the New Year holidays, and now I'm looking at March, and there is no aid yet. The lower House of Representatives is on break until the 28th of March. The upper house has voted, but the lower house would rather go to the stake rather than vote. Perhaps the fact that we left Avdiivka will somehow influence the Americans," added the former Ukraine's Security Service officer.

For reference. "We hear from Yanina" is a Telegram channel that discusses the events of the war in Ukraine. The latest messages consider the freezing of the conflict as a respite for the Ukrainian Armed Forces, but with the possibility of even greater losses. 

What happened before

On February 17, in order to avoid encirclement and save the lives of the military, Ukrainian military command decided to withdraw from Avdiivka and move to more favorable positions.

Ukraine's Defense Minister Rustem Umerov said that the decision to withdraw from Avdiivka was the right one and that Ukrainian soldiers are in need of some weapons and equipment.

Ukrainian defenders near Avdiivka inflicted huge losses on Russian enemy. In terms of personnel alone, they exceeded 47,000 soldiers, said the commander of the Tavria Operational and Strategic Group of Forces, Oleksandr Tarnavskyi.

In Russia, military and propagandist Andrei Morozov, call sign Murz, claimed 16,000 Russian army soldiers killed in the battle for Avdiivka. It is also important to note that he ran the Telegram channel 'We hear from Yanina'. Today it became known that he probably committed suicide. Morozov served for a long time in the armed formations of the so-called DPR and was a member of the Russian army.

The day before, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu reported to terrorist leader Vladimir Putin that the Russian army had allegedly taken control of Krynky on the left bank of the Kherson region.

The Southern Ukrainian Defense Forces later denied Shoigu's statement.

"Both Shoigu's statements about enemy losses near Avdiivka and about Krynky are false," said Serhiy Zgurets, director of the information and consulting company Defense Express. 

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