Russia’s army is estimated to have lost nearly 40% of its prewar fleet of tanks after nine months of fighting in Ukraine, according to a count by the specialist thinktank the International Institute of Strategic Studies (IISS).
Wagner boss Yevgeny Prigozhin has admitted that his mercenary group is facing difficulties in Ukraine and will soon “decrease” in size. “The number of Wagner units will decrease, and we will also not be able to carry out the scope of tasks that we would like to,” Prigozhin said, amid growing evidence that his political influence in the Kremlin is waning.
The European Commission has called for a ban on the export of vital technology to Russia worth €11bn to further weaken the Kremlin’s war effort, cementing what EU officials have called the bloc’s toughest ever sanctions. Unveiling the EU’s 10th round of sanctions against Russia since last February’s invasion, the European Commission president, Ursula von der Leyen, said the EU was targeting industrial goods that Russia needs, such as electronic components for drones and helicopters; spare parts for trucks and jet engines; construction equipment such as antennas or cranes that could be turned to military uses. For the first time the EU will also impose a ban on seven Iranian companies selling high-tech goods to Russia, although it was not immediately clear how this would be enforced.
Nato defence ministers met in Brussels, where the alliance’s head Jens Stoltenberg urged Western countries to boost supplies to Ukraine. Nato coun