Putin claims Russia is holding thousands of Ukrainian prisoners of war


Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Wednesday that Moscow’s armed forces have captured more than 6,000 Ukrainian prisoners of war since the conflict began in February 2022.

The figure is significantly higher than the number of Russian soldiers and officers in Ukrainian captivity, Putin said on Wednesday in St. Petersburg during a meeting with representatives of major international news agencies, including DPA.

Putin said Kiev has 1,348 Russians in captivity, while Russia has taken 6,365 Ukrainian prisoners.

Responding to a question about the number of Russian casualties in the war, the Russian leader said neither side provided concrete information, but he claimed Ukraine suffered significantly higher losses.

Kiev says Russia has lost more than 500,000 soldiers killed and wounded during the conflict. In February, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky estimated the number of Ukrainian deaths at 31,000.

The press conference in St. Petersburg is the first of its kind since Russia launched its invasion of Ukraine in 2022.

Putin is currently hosting the 27th edition of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum. Moscow is trying to present itself as a stable economic power, despite Western sanctions.

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