Western officials say Russian rebel forces ran over Ukraine’s leader

Western officials said they believed the Russian commander was run over by rebel forces during the fighting UkraineIn reference to what they described as the “moral challenges” faced by the invading forces.

They highlighted – and reiterated – reports earlier this week from a Ukrainian journalist that a tank had run over a colonel from the 37th Separate Guards Brigade with automatic rifles. Some reports stated that he died of his injuries.

One of the officials said they believed the brigade commander was “killed by his forces” “as a result of the scale of losses his brigade incurred” in the bitter fighting.

However, while there is some evidence to substantiate the claim that the commander was run over, it was not clear whether the colonel was dead, as Western officials claimed. Friday night, they partially retracted the claim in light of conflicting evidence on social media. They said they were seeking to clarify whether he was alive or dead – and said the main point was that he was the victim of a rebellion, not whether he was killed.

The original report on the rebellion was posted on Facebook by a Ukrainian journalist on Wednesday, Roman Tsympalyukwho said that it happened after the unit that was fighting in Makarev, west of Kyiv, lost “about 50% of its personnel”.

“Having chosen an appropriate moment, during the fight, he ran over the commander who was standing next to him, injuring his legs,” the journalist wrote. Then the colonel was taken to a hospital in Belarus.

A separate film showed the Chechen leader, Ramzan Kadyrov, a close ally of Russian President Vladimir Putin, commander Yuri Medvedev, being transported by medical forces, apparently alive.

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In it, a Chechen fighter speaks to a soldier on a stretcher with an obvious wound to his leg, saying: “Hold on … How are you? Yes? Talk to us …” The wounded soldier replies: “I’m fine. Where are you from?”

Evidence in support of Western officials’ claim that the colonel is dead has been limited to an address Report on MailOnlinewho said: “The Russian commander who deliberately ran over a tank led by his disgruntled soldiers was killed in protest against the massive death toll in his unit.”

Britain and other Western countries believe that Russian forces are increasingly demoralized as they suffer heavy losses in the fighting. The United States estimated that 7,000 Russians were killed, out of an invasion force of about 150,000.

Western officials believe that about one-sixth or perhaps one-fifth of the original Russian invasion force, comprising an estimated 20 battalion tactical groups, was “no longer combat effective”—a high degree of casualties, reflecting the failed and vicious Ukrainian invasion. defend.

Seven Russian generals were killed in the fighting, which also led to the deaths of several thousand Ukrainian military and civilian casualties. The latest official UN figure for civilian deaths is 1081 but this is almost certainly an underestimate.

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