KEY POINTS

  • The SSU did not specify where the Russian tanks were destroyed
  • It is unclear if any Russian soldiers died in the Ukrainian drone attack
  • Ukraine says more than 39,800 Russian soldiers have been killed in the war so far

The Ukrainian Army on Tuesday announced it had destroyed three more tanks belonging to the Russian army using only attack drones.

The Security Service of Ukraine (SSU) said their officers successfully destroyed three T-72s, Russian battle tanks commonly used by the Soviet Army in the 1970s. The SSU did not specify when and where the attack happened. It is also unclear if there were any casualties.

The SSU’s report on the recent attack comes just days after it released an audio of an intercepted phone call where a Russian soldier, whose identity was not revealed, told his mother that Ukrainian soldiers who attacked their unit destroyed their tanks and killed more than a dozen comrades.

“Mom, we had such a ‘circus’ today! At two o’clock in the morning – fifteen ‘200’ [killed]. Because they all were watching a movie in the tank. They threw it [a projectile] into the turret from a drone! A drone, mom, a drone! It’s a f**king disaster! They just approached us, dropped the ammo, and it blew up,” the soldier said in the phone call.

It is not immediately known whether the SSU’s reports are referring to the same attack.

The recent counteroffensive comes as the war in Ukraine stretches into its sixth month. According to estimates from the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine, at least 39,870 Russian soldiers have been killed in the war so far.

The Ukrainian government has not given any official number on its death toll. However, senior Ukrainian presidential aide Mykhalo Podolyak in June said that between 100 to 200 Ukrainian soldiers were dying in the eastern Donbas region every day.

The Ukrainian army is now working on liberating temporarily occupied territories, including the city of Kherson, as well as preventing the Russian army from taking over the province of Donetsk, which together with the Luhansk province makes up the Donbas region.

Russia, in contrast, is aiming to “help the people of eastern Ukraine to liberate themselves from the burden of this absolutely unacceptable regime,” Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said at an Arab League summit in Cairo on Sunday, as quoted by the Associated Press.

A Russian T-72 tank, left, and self-propelled gun have been placed on display in central Warsaw
A Russian T-72 tank, left, and self-propelled gun have been placed on display in central Warsaw AFP / Wojtek RADWANSKI
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