Hero Ukrainian snipers wipe out 300 Russian troops as Putins forces left quaking
Ukrainian fighter walks through burning Azovstal steel plant
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The troops are part of the alleged 34,500 Russian soldiers who have been killed, with reports speculating over 100,000 others have been injured. Whilst Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has called for more heavy-duty weapons to be sent to Ukraine quicker, the battle on the ground is also reliant on small arms to eliminate Russian forces in urban areas in eastern Ukraine.
A new report suggests many of the kills have come in the Kharkiv region and were conducted by members of the Ukrainian Azov battalion.
The unit claims to have killed more than 300 troops as they push back against Russian advances which are slowly capturing major cities in the region nonetheless.
The Azov unit has gained a fearsome reputation of resilience since its creation by Andriy Biletsky.
One member of the group, who works as part of a sniper team piloting a reconnaissance drone said: “I joined Azov because it’s the best unit now in Ukraine, they are the most highly motivated.
“We don’t have any ideology, as the Russian propaganda says.
“We’re just typical soldiers protecting our homeland.”
Many of the Azov fighters held non-military roles prior to the outbreak of the conflict.
However, the unit acknowledges the need for more weapons, with one member saying: “Our soldiers are growing in motivation and proficiency, but we need more long-range weapons to support their efforts.”
Huge numbers of weapons have been pledged by Western nations to support Ukraine in the defence against Russian forces.
The US has pledged $1billion (£800million) as further support.
Included in the latest package of weapons are Harpoon anti-ship missiles as well as Howitzer cannons.
US officials have also provided longer-range HIMARS and MRLS weapons to Ukraine, in spite of initial fears Ukraine would use the equipment to target locations within Russia.
Ukraine has guaranteed the weapons would only be used to protect interests within Ukrainian territory.
The UK has also contributed heavily to the supply of equipment to Ukraine.
In April, Defence Secretary Ben Wallace announced plans to send tracked MLRS systems to Ukraine, with three initial units sent over.
The MLRS is the older, bigger brother to the HIMARS system.
It features two six-pack rocket pods per carrier and its tank-like chassis gives it more manoeuvrability in rough, muddy terrain, although it features slower speeds than the HIMARS wheeled systems.
To date, no Western nation or NATO member has become directly involved in the conflict through fears of escalating the conflict into mainland Europe.
NATO has also refused to impose a no-fly zone over Ukraine for the same reason.
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In the early stages of the conflict, there was much debate over the notion of Poland supplying a fleet of Russian-built MiG 29’s to Ukraine to assist in the battle over the skies of Kyiv.
According to a report by ‘Forward Defence‘: “To help Ukraine expel Russian forces from its territory—and defend itself in the future—the United States must begin its full transition to US-made equipment now.
“That means Washington should send M1 Abrams tanks, F-16 fighter jets, light armoured vehicles, and helicopters.
“We believe this should be accompanied by renewed US statements that it will not intervene militarily in the conflict, to assuage Russian fears.”
Recent reports have shown Russia is now struggling to replenish lost equipment and personnel, with Moscow fighting to control a war it believed would end in a matter of days.
For more stories like this, follow Express.co.uk Defence and Security Correspondent James Lee on Twitter @JamesLee_DE
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