Russian general reportedly killed in eastern Ukraine, another high-ranking casualty
- Russian state media journalist says Major General Roman Kutuzov was killed
- Russia classifies military deaths as state secrets even in times of peace
A Russian general was killed in eastern Ukraine, a Russian state media journalist said, adding to the string of high-ranking military casualties sustained by Moscow.
The report, published on the Telegram messaging app by state television reporter Alexander Sladkov on Sunday, did not say precisely when and where Major General Roman Kutuzov was killed.
There was no immediate comment from Russia’s defence ministry.
Russian forces have intensified attacks to capture Sievierodonetsk, a key city in Ukraine’s eastern Donbas region that Moscow is targeting after failing to take the capital Kyiv early in the war.
Russia already classifies military deaths as state secrets even in times of peace and has not updated its official casualty figures in Ukraine since March 25, when it said that 1,351 Russian soldiers had been killed since the start of its military campaign on February 24.
It’s also estimated that Russia has lost as many as 15,000 troops in the war, if not more, and at least 12 Russian generals have been among those killed, according to Ukrainian and Western media reports.
Britain’s defence ministry said on Monday that Russia appeared to have suffered significant losses among mid and junior-ranking officers in Ukraine.
Meanwhile, Russian President Vladimir Putin fired five generals from the military’s top brass last week.
Putin’s dismissal of the generals was reported by the Russian newspaper Pravda, which cited an extract of the decree that a source confirmed to be authentic.
Per the outlet, the decree listed five major generals – Vasily Kukushkin, Alexander Laas, Andrey Lipilin, Alexander Udovenko, and Yuri Instrankin – as well as police colonel Emil Musin.
All five major generals held leading positions in the military for their various regions.
Their firing comes weeks after two generals were fired for performing poorly in Ukraine.
According to UK intelligence, Lieutenant General Serhiy Kisel, who commanded the elite 1st Guards Tank Army, was suspended for failing to capture Kharkiv. Meanwhile, Vice-Admiral Igor Osipov, who commanded Russia’s Black Sea Fleet, was fired after the Moskva battleship was sunk in April.
Meanwhile, Russia’s top commander for the Ukraine war, General Alexander Dvornikov, has not been seen for weeks, leading some US officials to speculate that he might have been removed from his post.
Friday marked the 100th day of the Ukraine war, which began when Putin launched an invasion on February 24.
Reuters and Business Insider