Study: Over 75,000 Russian soldiers killed in two years of war in Ukraine

The total number of Russian soldiers killed since the start of the war in Ukraine has been estimated to top 75,000 by journalists from Meduza and Mediazona, both independent media outlets revealed on Saturday.

The joint investigation, which was timed to coincide with the second anniversary of the war, attempted to provide a realistic death toll in the absence of any official Russian figures being published for over a year and a half.

To make their estimates, researchers compared lists of dead Russian soldiers with data available from the official registry of inheritance cases to produce a statistical estimate of Russian losses of between 66,000 and 88,000 over two years, averaged out to 75,000, or 120 soldiers killed on each day since 24 February 2022.

The principal groups of soldiers killed in the war were former convicts, professional soldiers and conscripts, the outlets said.

Meduza also found that the number of Russian losses doubled in 2023, with the death rate peaking at nearly 2,000 men per week between January and March 2023 during the Battle for Bakhmut.

After the capture of Bakhmut, the rate of Russian losses declined, yet it remained at a high level, “exceeding even Russia’s losses in the first days of the full-scale invasion”, Meduza reported. In late 2023, the casualty rate was on the rise again, likely due to the fighting in Avdiivka, which was finally captured by Russian troops earlier this month, according to Meduza.

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