Defence and army in Russia – Update on 11/06/2023

The files we follow: Human Rights in Russia; Russian economy; Russian domestic politics; Defence and military in Russia; Russian diplomacy in Africa and Asia; History, culture, society and Russian soft power ; Russo-Chinese relations. 

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On 6th June, the Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu stated that Ukrainian forces had started an offensive on the front.

The Russian Minister indicated that the Ukrainian army had suffered considerable losses but that the Russian army only had a few (3,715 Ukrainians, 71 Russians). 

The Russian Minister also stated that the Kiev regime sabotaged the Kakhovka hydroelectric power plant and called it a terrorist attack. The Russian Minister condemned the environmental consequences of the destruction of the power plant by the Ukrainians. 

The Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky accused Russia of being responsible for the explosion of the Kakhovka power plant. The Ukrainian President asked for Russia to bear criminal responsibility for this attack and for the environmental consequences. 

On 9th June, Army General Valery Guerasimov, Chief of the Defence Staff of the Russian armed forces, held a videoconference with his Chinese counterpart, General Liu Zhenli. General Guerasimov gave credit to the military cooperation between Russia and China. For General Guerasimov, cooperation with China is important in the “context of current events” in order to maintain national security. He also stated that Chinese-Russian cooperation had a “stabilising effect on the world situation”

On 10th June, Russian Defence Vice-Minister held a conference on recruitment of contracted military servicemen. According to the Vice-Minister, numerous citizens voluntarily enrolled in the Russian armed forces. For the Vice-Minister, “this is showing the strong consolidation of Russian society, the desire of citizens to make a personal contribution to the accomplishment of a common victory”

The Russian Ministry press-release does not mention the tens of thousands of Russian citizens who fled Russia since the start of the war in Ukraine.

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