Russia says almost 2,000 foreign mercenaries died in battles in Ukraine

By Anadolu Agency

The Russian Defense Ministry published on Friday the data about the foreign mercenaries fighting on Ukraine’s side.

According to the ministry, 6,956 people have arrived in Ukraine since Feb. 24, when the war started, 1,956 died in battles, while 1,779 left the country.

As of Friday, at least 3,221 foreigners are fighting on the Ukrainian side, Defense Ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov said at a press briefing in Moscow.

He noted that the ministry traces and notes the arrival of every mercenary in Ukraine.

“Currently, not only mercenaries, directly taking part in hostilities as part of Ukrainian troops, are put in our databases, we also count instructors, arrived to teach, provide assistance in the operation and repair of Western weapons supplied to Ukraine,” the spokesman noted.

According to Konashenkov, Poland is “the undisputed leader” among European countries by the number of mercenaries that arrived and died since the beginning of the war. Some 1,831 Polish fighters came to Ukraine, 378 of them lost their lives, and 272 returned home, he noted.

Romania is the second as 504 Romanian mercenaries joined the Ukrainian troops, 102 died, and 98 left Ukraine.

The UK follows with 422 mercenaries that arrived, 101 died, and 95 that have left Ukraine.

Canada is the principal “supplier” of mercenaries from the American continent as 601 of its citizens have entered Ukraine since February, while 162 of them died and 169 left the country.

The US is the second with 530 that have arrived, 214 died, and 227 mercenaries that left Ukraine.

“From the Middle East, South Caucasus, and Asia, the most — 355 mercenaries — came from Georgia, of which 120 were killed and 90 left Ukraine.

“This is followed by militants of terrorist formations transferred from the US-controlled areas of the Syrian Euphrates — 200 people. As of today (Friday), 80 of them have been destroyed and 66 have left Ukraine,” Konashenkov said.

The Russian Defense Ministry’s list includes 3,221 mercenaries and specialists from 64 countries, the spokesman said.

More than 4,500 civilians have been killed in Ukraine since the war started in Ukraine on Feb. 24.

Over 14 million people have been forced to flee their homes, including more than 7.7 million that have fled to other countries, according to UN figures.