MOSCOW, March 30. /TASS/. The Ukrainian military is daily losing 500 fighters in the area of Artyomovsk (called Bakhmut in Ukraine), Lugansk People’s Republic (LPR) people’s militia retired Lieutenant-Colonel Andrey Marochko said on Thursday.
"In my estimates, about 500 personnel daily [as casualties] there [in the Artyomovsk area]. These are both sanitary and irretrievable losses," the retired officer said in a live broadcast on Komsomolskaya Pravda radio.
The Ukrainian military experiences a shortage of fighters due to huge casualties and continues replenishing its troops, Marochko said.
"It continues replenishing the losses that the Ukrainian army is suffering," the retired officer said.
Marochko told TASS on March 27 that the Ukrainian military had lost as many as 1,500 soldiers in battles with Russian forces in the Artyomovsk area over the week.
Artyomovsk is located on the Kiev-controlled part of the Donetsk People’s Republic and is a major transportation hub for the Ukrainian army’s supplies in Donbass. Fierce fighting for the city is underway.
Yan Gagin, military-political expert and adviser to the acting head of the Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR), said on March 22 that the city had been practically sealed off by Russian forces and all approaches to Artyomovsk were under Russian artillery control. He earlier said that Russian forces controlled about 70% of the city.
Acting DPR Head Denis Pushilin has repeatedly said that there is no evidence of the Ukrainian army’s plans to leave Artyomovsk. Meanwhile, Kiev claims that the city’s defense will be bolstered. Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky earlier said that Ukrainian troops would not surrender Artyomovsk and would fight for it as long as they could.