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ISW: Russian officials refrain from publicly discussing invasion anniversary

by Rachel Amran February 26, 2024 7:43 AM 2 min read
Destroyed Russian tanks are lying in a field near the village of Bohorodychne in the Donetsk region, Ukraine, on Feb. 13, 2024. (Maxym Marusenko/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
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Russian officials and state-controlled media largely refrained from publicly discussing the second anniversary of the full-scale invasion of Ukraine on Feb. 24 to avoid highlighting Russia's failure to achieve its stated military objectives, the Institute for the Study of War announced in their daily assessment on Feb. 25.

Russian opposition media reported on Feb. 25 that state-controlled media channels did not mention the second anniversary of the full-scale invasion. Popular pundits on these channels mentioned the anniversary but did not provide further commentary on the subject. ISW also found minimal discussion of the date from political leadership.

ISW assessed that Russian officials and state-affiliated media were reluctant to discuss the anniversary to avoid highlighting Russia's failure to achieve its stated goals in Ukraine at a significant human cost.

Earlier this week, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky announced at a forum commemorating two years of full-scale war that 31,000 Ukrainian soldiers and 180,000 Russian soldiers have been killed since Feb. 24, 2022.

Independent Russian media outlets Meduza and Mediazona reported in a joint study on Feb. 24 that 83,000 Russian soldiers had been killed in Russia's war.

The U.K. Defense Ministry reported on Feb. 24 that according to its estimations, approximately 350,000 Russian personnel have been killed or wounded.

Neither Moscow nor Kyiv releases public information about troop losses, but the Russian military's culture of dishonest reporting means that Russian officials themselves likely have a "low level of understanding" about casualty figures, the ministry said in December 2023.

After 2 years of Russia’s full-scale war, Ukraine keeps fighting
Exactly two years ago, on Feb. 24, 2022, Russia launched its full-scale invasion of Ukraine, the largest military attack in Europe since World War II. This day in 2022 also marked a turning point in a decade of ongoing Russian aggression against Ukraine that started with the illegal annexation of

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