President Zelensky says more than 31,000 Ukrainian soldiers killed since Russia’s invasion two years ago News
© Presidential Office of Ukraine
President Zelensky says more than 31,000 Ukrainian soldiers killed since Russia’s invasion two years ago

President Volodymyr Zelensky said on Sunday that 31,000 Ukrainian soldiers had been killed since Russia’s full-scale invasion two years ago. This was Zelensky’s first release in over a year of public casualty figures since the beginning of Russia’s invasion, which has garnered accusations of violations of international law. Zelensky did not disclose the number of wounded soldiers due to security concerns.

According to Reuters, which posted a press conference video, Zelensky stated that “31,000 Ukrainian troops have been killed in this war. Not 300,000, not 150,000 … (Russian President Vladimir) Putin is lying there … But nevertheless, this is a big loss for us.” That number is in addition to the tens of thousands of Ukrainian civilians killed during Russia’s invasion reported by the UN.

Last week, Ukraine’s Security Services, with the assistance of prosecutors in the Donetsk region, opened another war crimes investigation into the Russian Federation. That probe followed reports that Russian troops executed six unarmed Ukrainian soldiers during fierce fighting in the city of Avdiivka over recent days. Over that period, a Russian offensive began across the disputed Donetsk region of Ukraine. According to state-run news services in Russia, it resulted in reported territorial gains for President Vladimir Putin.

Putin, for his part, has faced persistent allegations of violating international law and increasing domestic pressure during the ongoing conflict due to the large number of Russian casualties. The death of Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny earlier this month, while imprisoned for political crimes by Putin, sparked a wave of mass protests across Russia and quickly brought about widespread international condemnation.

Many countries have moved to sustain Ukraine’s effort to ward off Russian occupation via funding and military weaponry. However, conservatives in the US have challenged this support.