The Armed Forces of Ukraine incurred the losses as it pushed against Russian defenses, the military has claimed.
Ukrainian forces have lost up to 1,240 troops and 39 tanks during one 24-hour period, the Russian Ministry of Defense reported in its latest daily update on Friday. This adds to the heavy toll moscow claims Kiev suffered during a week when it is believed to have launched a long-expected counteroffensive against Russia.
The Ministry added that 30 infantry fighting vehicles, 38 armored vehicles, as well as a dozen pieces of artillery and other military hardware, some of it provided by Kiev’s Western sponsors, were also destroyed.
Two Ukrainian military jets, two UK-provided Storm Shadow cruise missiles, and 13 drones were intercepted and shut down during one day, the report added.
Russian and Western media have concluded that Ukraine has launched a major push against its opponent this week, trying to capitalize on the trove of weapons supplied by the US and its allies. Ukrainian officials have, nonetheless, offered conflicting reports on whether the operation has started.
Supporters of the country expressed hope that it could score significant territorial gains using Western-produced main battle tanks, which it didn’t have previously. The Russian military reported repelling a series of Ukrainian attacks over the week and said Kiev was paying a heavy price for probing the Russian defenses in various parts of the frontline.
Western nations have pledged to support Kiev for as long as it takes to inflict a “strategic defeat” on Russia. But media reports indicate that the scale of future military assistance would depend on whether Ukrainian troops manage to deliver battlefield successes. The White House is “anxiously watching” the action, since the reputation of President Joe Biden is at stake in it, Politico said of the Ukrainian operation.