Ukraine: 37,000 Missing Since War Began

Ukraine announced on Tuesday that nearly 37,000 civilians and military personnel are missing since the start of the Russian invasion.

This incomplete figure is partly due to the occupation of nearly 20% of Ukrainian territory by Moscow, according to Agerpres citing AFP.

In a new update, Ukrainian Human Rights Commissioner Dmytro Lubinets said on Facebook that "nearly 37,000 people are unaccounted for, including civilians, military personnel, and children." He stressed that "this figure could be much higher" as the review is still ongoing.

Since the Russian invasion began on February 24, 2022, tens of thousands of people - civilians or military personnel - have died. However, there is no overall death toll confirmed by independent sources, and the procedures for identifying the dead or missing can take months.

The Ukrainian and Russian armed forces have rarely communicated their military losses.

The number of civilian casualties is also unknown because no reliable information is available from territories occupied by Russia since the invasion. This invasion has caused widespread destruction in numerous Ukrainian cities and villages.

The case of Mariupol, a city besieged in the spring of 2022 by Russian forces and now under Russian occupation, is emblematic. According to Kyiv, tens of thousands of people died there or were buried under rubble or in mass graves.

Lubinets also stated that "about 1,700 Ukrainians are illegally detained" by Russia.

Finally, Ukraine estimates that 20,000 Ukrainian children have been deported to Russia in the more than two years of war.

The International Criminal Court issued an arrest warrant in the spring of 2023 against Russian President Vladimir Putin and the Commissioner for Children's Rights under the Presidency of the Russian Federation, Maria Lvova-Belova, for their role in the "deportation" of Ukrainian children to Russia. The Kremlin rejects these accusations.

Translation by Iurie Tataru

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