BBC News Russian identifies 92 Russian servicemen killed in attack on Makiivka

At least 92 Russian servicemen were killed in a missile attack on the Makiivka city located in the Donetsk “people’s republic”, BBC News Russian reports. The journalists have posted a list of names featuring photos of the killed men.

The Samara region draftees in the Makiivka college building on 31 December. The photo belongs to one of the servicemen / BBC

The Samara region draftees in the Makiivka college building on 31 December. The photo belongs to one of the servicemen / BBC

“Based on open data, the BBC managed to identify the names of 92 Russian soldiers killed during the attack on a college building in Makiivka, near Donetsk. Furthermore, families of at least 16 servicemen are unable to find [their relatives] neither among [the lists of] the killed nor of those who survived,” the BBC reports.

The majority of the killed were mobilised servicemen from the Samara region of Russia. Their relatives say that many of them received draft notices at the end of September and then underwent training for around two months in the military units of the region. On 26 December, they arrived in Makiivka.

BBC News Russian has also used open data to identify 15 servicemen who had been in Makiivka at the moment of the attack but whose fate is unknown, with their relatives unable to find out what had happened to them after the 1 January attack. Some of these families provided a DNA sample to help identify the killed. They were not made aware of the results.

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Deathly silence

A report from Russia’s Samara region, where, amidst New Year celebrations, the draftees killed in Makiivka were buried quietly, so that no one would notice

On 1 January, Ukraine’s Armed Forces reported that hundreds of Russian draftees had been killed following a HIMARS strike on Makiivka. The next day, Russia’s Defence Ministry reported that 63 Russian servicemen had been killed in a missile attack on Makiivka carried out by Ukraine’s Armed Forces. Later, the ministry said that the number of the killed rose to 89.

Russia’s Defence Ministry did not clarify whether the killed soldiers were draftees and what divisions they belonged to. At the same time, the Samara region governor Dmitry Azarov reported that residents of the region were among the killed.

The Russian ministry also accused the killed soldiers of being the reason their location had been attacked.

The ministry said that the reason for the attack was “the personnel turning on and mass using mobile phones in the area of reach of the enemy’s weapons of destruction, despite not being allowed to”. Allegedly, this was how Ukraine’s Armed Forces were able to determine the coordinates of the servicemen’s location.

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