Kremlin surprisingly admits losses after Ukraine offensive
6/6/2023, 6:15 p.m
Moscow rarely announces losses in its own ranks. Ironically, after the presumed start of the Ukrainian counter-offensive, the defense minister spoke about the fallen soldiers on the Russian side.
In a rare move, the Russian army on Tuesday announced the deaths of 71 of its soldiers in operations to repel Ukrainian attacks. “For the past three days, the Ukrainian regime has launched a long-promised offensive in different sectors of the front,” said Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu. “A total of 71 soldiers were killed and 210 injured.” Moscow rarely announces losses in its own ranks.
Shoigu also said several tanks and other vehicles as well as artillery pieces were damaged. According to him, since Sunday Ukraine has deployed “a large amount of equipment and forces” on various sections of the front. “The attempts to attack were thwarted (…). The enemy did not achieve their goals, they suffered heavy losses,” assured Shoigu. Army spokesman Igor Konashenkov had previously claimed that there were 900 dead on the Ukrainian side. In most cases, such information cannot be verified independently.
Russian Defense Minister Shoigu accused Ukrainian forces of being responsible for the destruction of the Kakhovka Dam in southern Ukraine. As a result of the destruction in the Russian-occupied territory, surrounding areas were flooded. This “sabotage” is aimed at “preventing offensive actions by the Russian army in this area of the front,” Shoigu said. Kiev, in turn, accused Moscow of bearing responsibility for the destruction of the dam.
Russia said on Monday that it had fended off large-scale Ukrainian attacks. Kiev, on the other hand, praised its own successes in and around the city of Bakhmut. The contrasting accounts came amid speculation about Ukraine’s expected counter-offensive.