The United States estimates that Russia has killed at least 15,000 people and injured 45,000 so far, CIA Director William Burns said on Wednesday, adding that Ukraine has also suffered heavy casualties.
Less than five months after President Vladimir Putin ordered an invasion of Russia’s neighbors, troops are marching through Donbas province in eastern Ukraine and occupying about a fifth of the country.
Burns, speaking at the Aspen Security Forum in Colorado, said the benefits were costly.
“The latest estimates from the US Secret Service would be something close to 15,000 (Russian soldiers) dead and maybe three times more wounded. So there is a considerable loss, “said Burns.
“And the Ukrainians have also suffered – probably a little less than that. But you know, significant casualties. “
Russia classifies military death as a state secret even in peacetime and has not updated its official casualties many times during the war.
On March 25, she said 1,351 Russian soldiers had been killed.
The Kyiv government said in June that 100 to 200 Ukrainian soldiers were killed daily.
On Wednesday, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said that the “mission” of the military in Moscow, Ukraine, now extends beyond the Donbas, in the clearest recognition to date that it has increased its war objectives.
But Burns said that at least for the moment, the concentration of Russian forces in the Donbas indicated that they had learned a great deal from mistakes made at the beginning of the campaign, when Moscow stopped its attack on Kyiv.
“In a way, what the Russian military has done is to retreat in a comfortable way to war, in a sense, by using their advantages and long-range firepower to stand up and destroy Ukrainian targets effectively and to make amends. weaknesses in manpower that they still experience, “said Burns.
In recent days, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has carried out Kyiv’s biggest internal cleansing of officials during the war, citing the failure to eradicate Russian spies and announcing a number of coups.
The United States has provided Ukraine with large amounts of intelligence to guide its decisions on the battlefield, raising questions about whether the CIA and the Pentagon should be concerned about Russia’s invasion.
Burns, however, seemed to downplay such concerns.
“We are confident that the partnership we built will be successful,” said Burns.
“And we are sharing a considerable amount of intelligence with the Ukrainian service and with the Ukrainian leadership, which they are using very effectively.
CIA director estimates that 15,000 Russians have died in the war in Ukraine – SABC News
Source link CIA director estimates that 15,000 Russians have died in the war in Ukraine – SABC News