Ukraine’s high casualty rate could bring war to tipping point

Analysis: Kyiv’s fighting strength is stretched, yet Russia could now benefit from a pause in fighting

  • Russia-Ukraine war: latest updates

Any way you count it, the figures are stark: Ukrainian casualties are running at a rate of somewhere between 6oo to 1,000 a day. One presidential adviser, Oleksiy Arestovych, told the Guardian this week it was 150 dead and 800 wounded; another, Mykhaylo Podolyak, told the BBC that 100 to 200 Ukrainian troops were being killed a day.

It represents an extraordinary loss of human life and capacity for the defenders, embroiled in a defence of the eastern city of Sievierodonetsk that, this week, turned into a losing battle. Yet the city was also arguably a place that Ukraine could have retreated from to the more defensible Lysychansk across the Siverski Donets River, the sort of defensive situation that Ukraine has fared far better at.

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