Ukraine acknowledged on Monday that some 9,000 soldiers have died since the start of the Russian invasion six months ago, as the European Union considers a “training” mission for the Ukrainian army in the face of a “protracted war”.
Russian President Vladimir Putin has condemned the death of the daughter of Alexander Dugin, an ideologue who supported the attack in Ukraine, after her car exploded near Moscow as a “hate crime”. Russian officials accuse Kiev of denying and fomenting internal conflicts in the Russian services.
Speaking at a forum in Kiev today, the commander of the Ukrainian army, Valery Zalushnyi, considered that Ukrainian children needed special attention because their parents “may be among the almost 9,000 heroes who died” at the front.
It was one of the few statements by Ukrainian officials on the war that Moscow started on February 24 and has driven Ukraine to the brink of destruction.
The previous estimate was made in mid-April, when Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said 3,000 Ukrainian soldiers had been killed and about 10,000 wounded.
Today, in his daily speech, Zelensky said that “the total number of different cruise missiles launched by Russia on Ukrainian territory is almost 3,500” and that “it is impossible to count Russian artillery bombardments because they are very intense.”
Meanwhile, the European Union (EU) is considering organizing a “training and assistance” mission for the Ukrainian military in neighboring countries, while several European countries are providing military equipment to Ukraine, EU embassy chief Joseph Borrell said today.
The proposal will be discussed at the EU Council of Defense Ministers in Prague next week.
He commented at a press conference in Spain that “a war that is going on and seems likely to continue requires training and assistance not only in providing equipment, but also in organizing the army.”
The war resulted in 12 million refugees and internally displaced people, the UN said. The general international community condemned Russia for its invasion of Ukraine.
Countries such as the European Union and the United States, the United Kingdom or Japan have enacted a series of economic sanctions against Russian interests and provided arms to Ukraine.