Russia reportedly lost up to half its tank fleet in Ukraine

9 February, 04:22 PM
In the General Staff, a higher number is called - more than 3,000 destroyed enemy tanks (Photo:General Staff)

In the General Staff, a higher number is called - more than 3,000 destroyed enemy tanks (Photo:General Staff)

Russia has potentially lost up to half of its operational tank fleet since the start of its full-scale invasion of Ukraine, U.S. television channel CNN reported on Feb. 9, with reference to the Oryx open-source monitoring group.

According to CNN, Oryx has been collecting visual evidence of military equipment losses in Ukraine since Russia’s invasion began on Feb. 24, 2022.

The group said this week it has verified 1,000 distinct Russian tank losses in the war – with 544 Russian tanks captured by Ukrainian forces, 79 of them damaged, and 65 abandoned.

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Jakub Janovsky, a military analyst who contributes to the Oryx blog, said that toll does not include losses Oryx has not been able to visually confirm.

At the same time, he estimated the actual toll could be nearer 2,000 tanks.

“Russia started the war with around 3,000 operational tanks … so there is a good chance that Russia has lost one half of (its) usable tanks,” Janovsky said.

In addition, according to Oryx’s numbers, the tank fight has skewed Ukraine’s way. On Oryx’s count, the 500-plus tanks Ukraine has captured from Russia more than cover the 459 tanks it has lost.

Meanwhile, Ukraine’s General Staff reported Russia had already lost 3,255 tanks in Ukraine since the beginning of the full-scale invasion.

On Feb. 5, UK business newspaper the Financial Times, citing sources in the Armed Forces of Ukraine, reported that a large-scale offensive by the Russian invaders would begin within the next 10 days – before Ukraine receives a new supply of Western weapons. It stated that Kyiv had “obtained very solid intelligence of Russia’s intent” to launch it.

Ukrainian intelligence services reported that Russian troops may launch this new offensive in the Donetsk, Luhansk and Zaporizhzhya oblasts.

According to the Bloomberg news agency, Russian dictator Vladimir Putin expects this new offensive will allow the invaders to seize the initiative from Ukraine. Putin is resolved to prosecuting the full-scale war against Ukraine for many years, the publication wrote.

U.S. magazine Foreign Policy reported on Feb. 8 that Russia is preparing for a new large-scale offensive against Ukraine by concentrating hundreds of thousands of troops in the east of Ukraine.

In preparation for a new offensive, Russia has begun arming itself and already has about 1,800 tanks, nearly 4,000 armored vehicles and 2,700 artillery systems in place.

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