A wounded Ukrainian serviceman receives treatment at a stabilisation point near Bakhmut


  • Reznikov said Ukraine is holding Bakhmut to limit Russia's possibilities of victory
  • Zelensky thanked several Ukrainian military brigades for fending off Russian attacks in Bakhmut
  • Russian forces have so far only made advances in street-by-street fighting

The Russian army is suffering from "insane" military losses in the war in Ukraine, with up to 500 soldiers getting killed or wounded in the battle in the town of Bakhmut each day, according to a top Ukrainian official.

Speaking in an interview with the Polish newspaper Wyborcza, Ukrainian Defense Minister Oleksiy Reznikov said he believes Russia is exhausting its offensive capabilities in trying to break through fierce Ukrainian defenses to take over control of Bakhmut.

"Their [Russians] losses are insane. According to our military estimates, only in the Bakhmut direction, the Russians lose an average of 500 people killed or wounded per day. This means that they are quickly exhausting their offensive capabilities there. Hence the principled decision of our command: to hold Bakhmut, despite their own losses," he said, as translated by Ukrainian news agency Interfax-Ukraine.

"Since its defense limits the possibilities of the Russians and gives us stability along the entire frontline. Will the occupiers be able to intensify their attacks? Let's see. They need success," Reznikov added.

Reznikov is not the only Ukrainian official to champion Ukraine's efforts in defending Bakhmut. On Wednesday, President Volodymyr Zelensky personally thanked the Kost Hordiienko 57th separate motorized infantry brigade, 77th separate airmobile brigade and the glorious Kholodny Yar 93rd separate mechanized brigade for their work in fending off Russian attacks.

"Bakhmut. Today, we have something to thank our warriors for, warriors who are fighting in the Bakhmut direction. Fighting firmly and efficiently," Zelensky said.

The town of Bakhmut in Donetsk Oblast has been the site of intense fighting between Russian and Ukrainian forces over the past months. Russian officials said their forces have made advances on the ground in street-by-street fighting inside the town. However, they have yet to force Ukraine's army to withdraw. Neither side has secured full control of the town.

It is unclear how many losses each side suffered in the battle in Bakhmut. A report published earlier this month suggested that the Wagner group, a private military company spearheading the attempt to capture Bakhmut, has lost up to 30,000 fighters or about one in three mercenaries in the battle for the town.

The report did not specify any number on Ukraine's losses, but noted that it is "much lower" than Russia's toll.

Drone footage over Bakhmut shows devastation amid fierce fighting