Copyright © 2024 Euromaidanpress.com

The work of Euromaidan Press is supported by the International Renaissance Foundation

When referencing our materials, please include an active hyperlink to the Euromaidan Press material and a maximum 500-character extract of the story. To reprint anything longer, written permission must be acquired from [email protected].

Privacy and Cookie Policies.

Around 11,500 have been killed in Putin’s war in Donbas

Around 11,500 have been killed in Putin’s war in Donbas
Article by: Alya Shandra

Ukrainian military losses

It’s hard to tell the exact number of Ukrainian military casualties, as Ukraine has not revealed official data on those that were killed in the Donbas war to journalists and the public. There are numbers that are released by Ukraine’s Ministry of Defense on servicemen killed in action. However, not all those that are killed are accounted for in those reports, as they include only battalions that are subordinated to either the Ministry of Internal Affairs or the Ministry of Defense. The volunteer battalions that are fighting along the regular Ukrainian Army in Donbas have had a complicated history of becoming part of either the MIA or MoD, and it is unclear whether losses from early days are included in the statistics.  There are some volunteer battalions that are still not subordinated to either of those Ministries (the Right Sector and OUN battalions that are part of the Ukrainian Volunteer Corps). They and other losses from border patrol guards, the Security Service of Ukraine, and unidentified losses have been taken into account in an article on Wikipedia that is kept updated by volunteers. Oleksandr Oksymets from Ukrainian website texty.ua has calculated losses based on this independent Wikipedia bookkeeping.

According to him, 1521 military servicemen have died in the Donbas war from its start in March 2014. 411 of them have died during the ceasefire that was announced following the signing of a peace protocol in Minsk on September 5 between the separatist leaders and representatives of the Ukrainian government. The majority of those that died, 1136, were subordinated to the Ministry of Defense; the National Guard and battalions under the Ministry of Internal Affairs suffered 218 losses (click to enlarge).

9months

However, it may very well be that the actual military losses are much higher. It is unclear to this day how many casualties were carried in the most tragic battle for Ukraine, the battle of Ilovaisk, during which surrounded Ukrainian troops came under enemy fire when retreating through a “green corridor.” The accounts vary significantly. Donbas battalion commander Semen Semenchenko claims over 1000 troops were killed in Ilovaisk; this number is supported by a temporary investigative committee. However, only 241 deaths have been officially recognized by the Prosecutor’s Office as of 11 December. Azov battalion commander Andriy Biletskyi is also convinced that at least 1000 lives were taken in the tragic battle, which is being investigated at present to find those guilty of such losses. Thus, if 1000 perished in Ilovaisk and not 241, the Ukrainian military losses could reach over 2000.

Ukrainian civilian losses

According to the December 15 UN report, at least 10,322 people have been wounded and 4,707 people have been killed in Donbas. This number includes casualties among the Ukrainian armed forces as reported by the Ukrainian authorities; the 298 people from flight MH-17; and casualties reported by civil medical establishments of the Donetsk and Luhansk Oblasts. The report notes that the actual number is likely to be higher, as both civilian and military casualties are underreported. A Lithuanian consul and Italian journalist have also been killed.

Russian military losses

As Russia continues to deny presence of its troops and weapons in Ukraine, there are no official statistics on Russian losses in the war. Occasionally, numbers of Russian losses sound from the briefings of Ukraine’s National Security and Defense Council, but chances are high that those numbers are exaggerated. The estimates of a Yelena Vasilieva, a Russian human rights activist managing the FB community Cargo-200 (“Cargo-200” is military speak for KIA soldiers) may be more reasonable: she claims that Russia’s military losses in Donbas could reach 4360 servicemen, albeit she acknowledges that this number is very much approximate. Apart from that, militants from the local population have been killed, as well as 4 Russian journalists. The Wikipedia article had counted the total losses of separatist forces, including Russian Army forces, at 6000.

Total losses

4,707 people from the UN report + 750 unreported deaths at Ilovaisk + 6,000 separatist troops (out of which 4,360 are Russian servicemen) = 11,457 deaths. Quite a price to pay for the geopolitical ambitions of one mad man.

You could close this page. Or you could join our community and help us produce more materials like this.  We keep our reporting open and accessible to everyone because we believe in the power of free information. This is why our small, cost-effective team depends on the support of readers like you to bring deliver timely news, quality analysis, and on-the-ground reports about Russia's war against Ukraine and Ukraine's struggle to build a democratic society. A little bit goes a long way: for as little as the cost of one cup of coffee a month, you can help build bridges between Ukraine and the rest of the world, plus become a co-creator and vote for topics we should cover next. Become a patron or see other ways to support. Become a Patron!

To suggest a correction or clarification, write to us here

You can also highlight the text and press Ctrl + Enter

Please leave your suggestions or corrections here


    Euromaidan Press

    We are an independent media outlet that relies solely on advertising revenue to sustain itself. We do not endorse or promote any products or services for financial gain. Therefore, we kindly ask for your support by disabling your ad blocker. Your assistance helps us continue providing quality content. Thank you!

    Related Posts