In the weeks after Russia’s invasion, Ukrainians fled their homes at a pace not seen in Europe since World War II. That exodus has slowed, but this week we have had a reminder that the movement of humanity provoked by the Russian invasion continues. And the numbers are staggering.
In less than six months, more than 12 million people have left their homes in Ukraine. The United Nations, which keeps these statistics, reports that those millions are roughly divided between those now living in other parts of Europe — some 6.2 million Ukrainian refugees are in that category — and another 6.3 million “internally displaced” Ukrainians — meaning those who have fled their homes to seek safety and shelter in another part of their country.
Considering Ukraine’s prewar population was around 42 million, these figures mean that roughly 30 percent of Ukrainians have left their homes and have not returned. Staggering, indeed.
Grid’s reporting is based on the best available data and reporting; in some cases, we explained a range of figures or the reason we chose one over another. We originally published this document on March 24 and will update it every Thursday as long as the war persists.
Civilians killed: at least 5,300 (probably thousands more)
On June 7, a Ukrainian official said at least 40,000 Ukrainian civilians had been killed or wounded since the war began. The official offered no breakdown of dead vs. wounded. The United Nations’ latest estimate of civilians killed is more than 5,300, but it consistently adds that the figure is an undercount, as is its estimate of total casualties — a combination of deaths and injuries — given as more than 10,000. (updated Aug. 3; source, source)
Ukrainian soldiers killed: 10,000 to 11,000
On June 10, top advisers to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy estimated that 10,000 Ukrainian soldiers have been killed since the war began. U.S. intelligence officials have put the number at 5,500 to 11,000 Ukrainian soldiers killed since the invasion. Also on June 10, a presidential adviser said that Ukraine was losing as many as 200 soldiers each day. (updated June 15; source, source)
Russian soldiers killed: 1,351 to 38,000
Ukraine has raised its estimate of Russian soldiers killed in the conflict to 38,000. NATO has estimated Russian troop losses at between 7,000 and 15,000. Russian officials earlier claimed 1,351 troop losses, though spokesman Dimitry Peskov said there have been “significant losses of troops, and it’s a huge tragedy for us.” (updated July 16; source, source, source)
Russian generals killed: 8 to 13
A retired Russian general was reportedly shot down over Luhansk in late May — by Ukrainian counts the 13th Russian general to be killed in Ukraine. Previously, the Defense Intelligence Agency reported that between eight and 10 Russian generals have been killed in Ukraine. Grid’s Tom Nagorski and Joshua Keating previously reported on the possible explanations for this “inconceivable” toll: poor communications and command-and-control structures within the Russian military. (updated May 25; source, source)
Total displaced Ukrainians: at least 12 million
There are more than 6.3 million Ukrainian refugees reported in other European countries currently. U.N. data indicates that more than 10 million have crossed the border since the start of the war, but millions have returned home, largely from Poland, as Nikhil Kumar and Kseniia Lisnycha reported. The International Organization for Migration’s latest survey of internally displaced Ukrainians, in late June, found more Ukrainians returning home from within Ukraine, but more than 6 million remain displaced. (updated Aug. 3; source, source)
Internally displaced Ukrainians: nearly 6.3 million
An overview of the violence
Global food markets: Wheat prices decrease 11 percent since invasion, after weeks of fluctuation
Grid coverage this week
- Ukraine turning point? The offensive against Russia that may decide the war (Aug. 3)
- Putin could give a Ukraine victory speech tomorrow. Here’s what it might say. (Aug. 1)
- World in photos: A summer haven for Ukrainian children in the midst of war (July 29)
- Global food crisis: Beyond the Ukraine-Russia grain deal, what else can the world do? (July 27)
Learn more: Grid’s 360s on the Ukraine War
- 360: What led to Europe’s worst refugee crisis since World War II
- 360: Casualty of war in Ukraine: The global food supply
- 360: War in Ukraine: How we got here — and what may come next
- 360: Russia’s billionaires: Who they are, what they own — and can they influence Vladimir Putin?
- 360: Why danger still looms at Ukraine’s nuclear power plants