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British Intelligence Estimates Over 320,000 Russian Combatant Casualties in Ukraine Conflict

The British Ministry of Defense's intelligence services disclosed on December 4, 2023, that the Russian military and Wagner Group have likely sustained significant casualties in the ongoing conflict in Ukraine. According to their report, Russian Ministry of Defense forces have potentially suffered between 180,000 and 240,000 wounded and around 50,000 fatalities since the conflict's inception on February 24, 2022. Additionally, the Wagner Group, a private military company, is estimated to have incurred approximately 40,000 wounded and 20,000 fatalities.
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Around 200,000 Russian soldiers are currently deployed in Ukraine. (Picture source Russian Media)

Cumulatively, these figures suggest that Russian combatant casualties could range from 290,000 to 350,000, with an estimated median of 320,000 total casualties. This alarming toll reflects the intensity and scale of the conflict.

The report also highlighted the challenges in obtaining accurate casualty figures due to a culture of dishonest reporting within the Russian military. This lack of transparency complicates the efforts to understand the full extent of the losses.

The Russian military is one of the largest globally, boasting approximately 1 million active personnel. Its army comprises about 280,000 soldiers, supported by a substantial reserve force. Since the beginning of the invasion, the number of Russian soldiers in Ukraine has varied significantly, with estimates ranging between 100,000 and 200,000 in recent weeks.

Former Ukraine's defense minister, Oleksiy Reznikov, had previously estimated Russian forces around Ukraine at 149,000, while President Volodymyr Zelenskiy suggested a figure of about 200,000. Before the invasion, U.S. calculations indicated approximately 150,000 Russian troops on Ukraine's borders. Russia maintains a constant border presence of around 35,000 military personnel from its standing army of 280,000 active duty soldiers.

These figures underline the immense human cost of the conflict and the significant impact on Russian military resources.

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