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What is known about the HIMARS missile attack that left more than 60 Russian soldiers dead in Ukraine

Russia acknowledged the highest number of casualties in a single attack in Ukraine after a bombardment in Makiivka, in the east of the country, which left at least 63 soldiers dead.

Here’s what we know about this bombing claimed by the Ukrainian military.

What happened in Makiivka?

On Monday in the early afternoon, The Russian Ministry of Defense issued a rare announcement announcing that 63 of its soldiers were killed in a bombardment using a HIMARS missile system.a weapon issued by USA a Ukrainewhich allows long-range attacks.

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The bombing occurred in the town of Makiivkain territory long occupied by Moscow, east of Donetsk, one of the strongholds controlled by pro-Russian separatists fighting kyiv in the conflict that began in 2014.

The spokesman for the Russian Defense Ministry, Igor Konashenkov, who did not specify the date of the attack, reported that four missiles hit “a temporary deployment center” of the Russian military. The official indicated that two other rockets were shot down.

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The announcement is unusual, since it is the highest number of casualties in a single attack since the start of the Russian invasion in February and it is the first balance of military losses made since September. Then, the Russian Defense Minister, Sergei Shoigu, reported 5,937 deaths in the Russian ranks in several months of fighting.

What do the Ukrainians say?

Ukraine acknowledged that it launched this attack on December 31.before the New Year, but the information about the Russian losses in Makiivka they are contradictory.

The Department of Strategic Communications of the Ukrainian Army reported on Telegram a balance of more than 400 dead and 300 wounded.

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Meanwhile, the general staff indicated that it does not have definitive figures on the number of Russian casualties, but it did report that up to ten military vehicles of all kinds were destroyed.

Why so many deaths?

The Russian military did not explain the reason for this high casualty count, but Ukrainian forces cited that there was a “concentration zone” of soldiers in Makiivka.

On Sunday, Russian and Ukrainian media began reporting on this attack claiming that the bombed building housed Russian conscripts, that is, non-professional soldiers.

A source from the local separatist authorities explained to the Russian agency TASS that this bombardment occurred because many soldiers used their mobile phones, which allowed them to be geolocated by the Ukrainians.

What has been the reaction in Russia?

The announcement of these casualties caused a commotion in Russia and also It generated criticism against the military commanders, who have accumulated several humiliating defeats on the Ukrainian front in recent months.

“Despite the fact that several months of war have passed, some conclusions have not yet been reached”found the blogger Boris Rojinclose to the environment of the Ukrainian separatists, who reproached the “incompetence” of the Russian military high command.

For his part, the Russian war correspondent Alexander Kots wondered why conscripts continue to be accommodated in hotels, hostels and schools.

Former separatist commander Igor Strelkov explained that the building was completely destroyed by the bombardmentsince there was an ammunition depot there.

This Tuesday, commemorative ceremonies were organized in the Russian city of Samara and in other surrounding towns, where a part of the victims originate from.

Source: Elcomercio

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