In the first minutes of the new year, a Ukrainian counterattack against a barracks in occupied Donetsk indicated the death of 400 Russian soldiers. Moscow authorities have acknowledged only 63 deaths. However, it would be the attack with the lowest official casualties on the Russian side since the invasion of Ukraine.
Since February 24, Ukraine says it has killed 107,440 Russian soldiers. The last inventory of the Moscow authorities dates back to September 21 and accounts for the death of 5937 soldiers. Since then, complete silence. It is very rare that 63 soldiers were killed in a single operation – In comparison, when the Ukrainians sank the flagship of the Black Sea Fleet, the Moskva, with at least 400 crew members, the Russians acknowledged the death of one sailor and the disappearance of 27 others. At least 40 people died.
According to a statement from the Russian Defense Ministry, Ukrainian forces fired six rockets with the US-supplied HIMARS system. Two of them were intercepted, but the other four reached makeshift camps where Russian forces were housed in an old college in Makiivka, a city neighboring Donetsk, the capital of the region of the same name. According to local pro-Russian officials, the attack reportedly took place just after midnight, celebrating the entry of the army into 2023.
Critical voices were heard among Russian military commentators and bloggers, demanding accountability for commanders who allegedly stationed troops next to the ammunition depot. Unauthorized video from the site shows the complete destruction, leading some to question the official balance sheet. One of the commentators, former separatist leader Igor Kirkin (also known as Igor Strelkov), says that most of the troops were recently mobilized, meaning they were part of the latest recruitment batch.
However, the Chief of Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine acknowledged the attack, saying that “up to 10 units of various types of enemy military equipment were destroyed or damaged.” It also indicated that “human” losses were being verified. But earlier, the Armed Forces’ Strategic Communications Department said 400 people had died and 300 were injured. As a result of “careless handling of heating devices”, neglecting safety measures and smoking in an unspecified area, Santa Claus bagged around 400 dead pig dogs. said the news on Telegram.