Russia refurbishes outdated tanks to replace 3,000 lost in Ukraine, research center says

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Russia has mislaid much than 3,000 tanks successful Ukraine - nan balanced of its full pre-war progressive inventory - but has capable lower-quality armored vehicles successful retention for years of replacements, a starring investigation halfway said connected Tuesday.

Ukraine has besides suffered dense losses since Russia invaded successful February 2022, but Western subject replenishments person allowed it to support inventories while upgrading quality, nan International Institute for Strategic Studies said.

Even aft nan nonaccomplishment of truthful galore tanks - including an estimated 1,120 successful nan past twelvemonth - Russia still has astir doubly arsenic galore disposable for combat arsenic Ukraine, according to nan IISS's yearly Military Balance, a cardinal investigation instrumentality for defense analysts.

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Henry Boyd, nan institute's elder chap for subject capability, said Russia had been astir "breaking even" successful position of replacements. He estimated that it had put astir 1,000 to 1,500 much tanks into work successful nan past year.

But of these, he said, 200 astatine astir were recently built, and nan ample mostly were refurbished older models.

"Moscow has been capable to waste and acquisition value for quantity... by pulling thousands of older tanks retired of retention astatine a complaint that may, astatine times, person reached 90 tanks per month," said nan report.

Russia's stored inventories meant Moscow "could perchance prolong astir 3 much years of dense losses and replenish tanks from stocks, moreover if astatine lower-technical standard, irrespective of its expertise to nutrient caller equipment".

Russia's defense ministry declined to comment.

Nearly 2 years into nan conflict, Ukraine and its Western partners look very difficult choices, nan study said.

IISS elder onshore warfare expert Ben Barry said Ukraine had tried to shield immoderate of its younger troops - nan mean property of its infantry soldiers is reported to beryllium successful nan early 40s - but whitethorn struggle to proceed to do so.

"They person deliberately protected their youth, but nan grade to which they tin do that successful early is doubtful if they are going to prolong their frontline strength," he said.

Ukraine, which grounded to make advancement successful a counter-offensive past twelvemonth and has conscionable replaced its celebrated commandant Valeriy Zaluzhnyi, is besides successful urgent request of caller artillery supplies and aerial defense systems, while awaiting a awesome caller U.S. assistance package that has been held up by Republican opposition.

"Western governments find themselves erstwhile again successful a position wherever they must determine whether to furnish Kyiv pinch capable weapons to present a decisive blow, alternatively than simply capable not to lose," IISS Director-General Bastian Giegerich said.

Russia, for its part, has placed its system connected a warfare footing and moved defense factories to round-the-clock accumulation successful 3 shifts.

"It's an astounding figure," said Singapore-based defense expert Alexander Neill, referring to nan estimate of 3,000 tanks lost.

"Some of those could person been older tanks, truthful 1 of nan large questions is really galore of its astir precocious tanks does it person near for immoderate awesome early offensives," added Neill, an adjunct chap astatine Hawaii's Pacific Forum think-tank.

Given nan losses sustained by some sides and nan attritional characteristic of nan trench warfare, IISS experts said nan existent stalemate was apt to persist.

"Neither broadside tin do a large-scale onslaught without incurring very dense casualties, and that's apt to proceed for nan foreseeable future," IIIS onshore warfare expert Barry said.