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War in Ukraine: almost 40,000 Russian soldiers have died in the fighting in Donbas, according to Zelensky

Smoke rises after shelling in the city of Severodonetsk during the fighting between Ukrainian and Russian troops in the eastern region of Ukraine, on June 7, 2022. (ARIS MESSINIS / AFP).

Day 110 of the Russian invasion of Ukraine: The fighting in Severodonetsk and Lisychansk intensifies, the dead Russian soldiers will reach 40,000 in June, according to the Ukrainian president, Volodymyr Zelensky, and Amnesty International (AI) has accused the Russian army of using cluster bombs.

The number of casualties will force the Russian command to send reinforcements to Ukraine and involve new tactical groups in their quest to take control donbaseastern region part of which self-proclaimed its independence and which was one of the Russian arguments to start the war.

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The Swedish Prime Minister, Magdalena Andersson, meets in Stockholm with the Secretary General of the NATOJens Stoltenberg, to discuss Sweden and Finland’s application to join the Alliance and the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

On the 110th day of the Russian invasion of Ukrainethese are the keys and the latest events:

ON THE TERRAIN

The Ukrainians, surrounded in Severodonetsk: The Russian army, with the support of artillery, has managed to storm the strategic city of Severodonetskin eastern Ukraine, and keeps the remaining Ukrainian troops in the area surrounded.

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According to the latest report from the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukrainein their offensive on this city, which could give the Russians control of the entire region of Lugansk“the enemy had a relative success”, because he has not completely expelled the Ukrainian troops and, therefore, “the fight continues”, he assures on his Facebook page.

Smoke rises after shelling in the city of Severodonetsk during the fighting between Ukrainian and Russian troops in the eastern region of Ukraine, on June 7, 2022. (ARIS MESSINIS / AFP).

Thus, “occupation forces focus on offensive operations to surround Ukrainian troops in the Severodonetsk and (nearby) Lisychansk areas, and to block logistics routes from Bakhmut”, another town in the area.

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According to the latest report from the Institute for the Study of War (United States), Russian forces continued ground assaults on Severodonetsk and blew up the bridges connecting this city with Lysichansk across the Siverskyi Donets River in a likely attempt to cut Ukrainian land lines of communication.

40,000 dead Russians, according to Zelensky: The key tactical objective of the Russian army in the east of Ukraine has not changed, and Russia will try to deploy reserves in the donbasbut he may lose 40,000 of his troops as early as June. The President of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelenskysaid this in a video speech on Sunday, June 12, Ukrinform reports.

“The Russian army is trying to deploy reserve forces in the donbas. But what reserves can they have now? It seems that they will try to throw into battle the poorly trained recruits and those who were gathered through covert mobilizations”he pointed.

Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelensky listens to a report from the armed forces near the battlefront, Sunday, June 5, 2022, in the Donetsk region.  (Ukrainian Presidential Press Office via AP).
Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky listens to a report from the armed forces near the battlefront, Sunday, June 5, 2022, in the Donetsk region. (Ukrainian Presidential Press Office via AP).

And added that “Russian generals see their people simply as cannon fodder they need to gain an advantage in numbers, in manpower, in military equipment. And this means only one thing: Russia he may cross the line of 40,000 of his troops lost as early as June. In no other war in many decades have they lost so much.”

According to the Institute for the Study of War, if Russia deploys reservists it is likely that this deployment will negatively affect the ability of its main units to regenerate their combat power for quite some timeand that battalions spawned this way will not have the combat power of normal ones.

Russia uses cluster bombs, according to Amnesty International: Russia’s indiscriminate use of prohibited weapons such as cluster bombs has killed hundreds of civilians in the Ukrainian city of Kharkivaccording to an investigation revealed this Monday by Amnesty International (AI).

In his report “Anyone can die at any time”, organization accuses Russian troops of indiscriminately shelling residential neighborhoods in Kharkiv with rockets that by their nature have little precision to hit specific targets.

Locals take some belongings from a residential building partially destroyed by Russian bombing in the Nord Saltivka district, in Kharkiv, Ukraine, on May 23, 2022. (EFE/EPA/SERGEY KOZLOV).

AI investigators found evidence of repeated use of 9N210 and 9N235 cluster munitionsas well as dispersible mines, all of which are prohibited by international treaties.

DIPLOMACY AND SANCTIONS

Sweden and Finland negotiate their entry into NATO: The Swedish Prime Minister, Magdalena Andersson, meets in Stockholm with the Secretary General of the NATO, Jens Stoltenbergto discuss Sweden and Finland’s application to join the Alliance and the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Stoltenberg expressed this Sunday his confidence that the entry of Finland and Sweden will be achieved despite the “legitimate misgivings of Turkey” against him and described the next summit in Madrid as “crucial”, although that appointment should not be taken as a “last term ”.

“The Madrid summit has never been considered the last deadline to complete the ratification of Finland and Sweden’s entry,” said Stoltenberg, on a working visit to Helsinki, in a joint appearance with the country’s president, Sauli Niinistö.

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