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HomeBreaking NewsRussia now says 89 killed in Ukraine attack, blames mobile phones

Russia now says 89 killed in Ukraine attack, blames mobile phones

'Quick read' news summary

Russia’s defence ministry has raised to 89 the number of its military personnel killed in a recent Ukrainian rocket raid on a school housing soldiers in Makiivka, in the Russian-occupied Donetsk region, and blamed the attack on unauthorised use of mobile phones by its forces.

While Ukraine has claimed that about 400 Russian soldiers were killed in the missile attack in the first minutes of New Year’s Day on Sunday, Moscow had until Wednesday maintained that 63 Russian soldiers were killed.

Russia’s initial admission of 63 deaths was already highly unusual as it marked the most significant loss of life from a single raid confirmed by Moscow since the start of its Ukraine invasion in February 2022.

“The number of our dead comrades has gone up to 89,” Lieutenant General Sergey Sevryukov said in a video statement released by the Russian defence ministry early on Wednesday. The death toll was increased after additional bodies were found under rubble in the town of Makiivka, he said.

The use of mobile phones by Russian soldiers was to blame for the attack, Sevryukov added.

“It is already obvious that the main reason for what happened was the switching on and massive use — contrary to the prohibition — by personnel of mobile phones in a reach zone of enemy weapons,” he said.

“This factor allowed the enemy to track and determine the coordinates of the soldiers’ location for a missile strike.”

The devastating attack on a vocational school that was converted into military quarters has spurred anger among Russian nationalists and some legislators who are again questioning the military strategy of Moscow’s commanders in Ukraine.

In a post on the Telegram messaging app, Igor Girkin, a former Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) officer who was instrumental in starting the initial 2014

Russia’s defence ministry has raised to 89 the number of its military personnel killed in a recent Ukrainian rocket raid on a school housing soldiers in Makiivka, in the Russian-occupied Donetsk region, and blamed the attack on unauthorised use of mobile phones by its forces. “The number of our dead comrades has gone up to 89,” Lieutenant General Sergey Sevryukov said in a video statement released by the Russian defence ministry early on Wednesday. The use of mobile phones by Russian soldiers was to blame for the attack, Sevryukov added.

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