NewsRecord increase in disabled Russian men suggests hidden military casualties

Record increase in disabled Russian men suggests hidden military casualties

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12:02 PM EDT, March 15, 2024

Last year, 2.17 million disabled men between the ages of 31 and 59 were registered in Russia, breaking the record after eight years. The independent Russian service "Werstka" analyzed pension fund and social insurance data.

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According to "Werstka," in 2022, there were officially 1.67 million disabled men in Russia within the same age group. Thus, in 2023, this number increased by 507,000, or 30 percent. "This is the highest increase in the last eight years," we learn.

Russians hide the truth

2023, a significant spike was also noted among disabled men aged 18–30: 290,000 individuals. This figure was only surpassed in 2016 and 2017, with 319,000 and 302,000 respectively. The Federal State Statistics Service (Rosstat) did not release the data for 2022.

Demographer Alexei Raksza mentioned to "Werstka" that the increase in the number of disabled men is likely due to military injuries.

"Even partial recognition in these statistics could change the narrative. I believe there are tens of thousands, if not hundreds of thousands, of disabled soldiers. If the increase were lesser, it could indicate that they are being partially or completely obscured," he stated.

Another demographer, who preferred to remain anonymous, also highlighted a "certain connection" between the surge in the number of disabled men and the conflict.

Colossal Russian losses

"Werstka" reports that Rosstat has withheld data on its website concerning the number of disabled individuals among men aged 18 to 30.

As of early January 2024, the Russian army had lost approximately 75,000 soldiers in Ukraine, according to estimates by the independent service Mediazona and the Russian section of the BBC. In August 2023, "The New York Times" cited American officials estimating Ukrainian military losses at 70,000 killed and between 100,000 to 200,000 wounded.

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