Vlad’s military chief wounded in Ukraine & scurries home days after arriving
VLADIMIR Putin’s top military commander has been wounded in Ukraine and was sent back to Russia just days after he arrived to take charge of the war.
The Chief of the Russian General Staff Valery Gerasimov had been sent by Putin to take personal control of his push to grab territory in Donbas and eastern Ukraine.
The unconfirmed claim is that Gerasimov, 66, was wounded in Izyum in Ukraine’s Kharkiv region, which is at the centre of intense fighting.
It is also where Russia’s ninth general Major General Andrei Simonov, 55, was killed, according to reports today.
Footage shared on social media appears to show the strike from a rocket salvo.
The attack also reportedly destroyed over 30 Russian armoured vehicles, including tanks.
And now an unofficial Russian source reported that Gerasimov sustained “a shrapnel wound in the upper third of the right leg without a bone fracture.
“The shard was removed – there is no danger to life.”
Ukrainian government official Anton Gerashchenko said the attack on Izyum was “the very place where…Gerasimov, who personally came to lead the attack on Slavyansk, was located”.
A “large number” of senior officers were killed, he said.
Pro-Ukr Telegram channel Vertikal said Gerasimov had been “wounded near Izyum”.
“Our source reports that his legs and hips are damaged.”
It suggested that three of his entourage had been killed and the chief of the general staff was evacuated.
Agentstvo media outlet reported that he was flown out of the war zone initially by an Mi-8 military helicopter to Belgorod in western Russia.
Separately, a military site in Belgorod region was seen on fire in videos, caused by a suspected Ukrainian attack.
Three Ka-52 attack helicopters circled as the Mi-8 transported him and other top brass.
Then in Belgorod, he boarded a Defence Ministry Tu-154 plane which flew to an unknown destination.
Founder of independent Conflict Intelligence Team Ruslan Leviev said an eyewitness at the airport had seen Gerasimov board the plane unaided.
“The source confirms that it was Gerasimov who flew away,” he posted.
“But he went on board himself, alive and well.”
If true, his wounding even if minor by the Ukrainians is another deep psychological blow to Putin and his faltering war campaign.
Gerasimov is in charge of the Russian war campaign alongside defence minister Sergei Shoigu.
Help those fleeing conflict with The Sun’s Ukraine Fund
PICTURES of women and children fleeing the horror of Ukraine’s devastated towns and cities have moved Sun readers to tears.
Many of you want to help the five million caught in the chaos — and now you can, by donating to The Sun’s Ukraine Fund.
Give as little as £3 or as much as you can afford and every penny will be donated to the Red Cross on the ground helping women, children, the old, the infirm and the wounded.
Donate here to help The Sun’s fund
Or text to 70141 from UK mobiles
£3 — text SUN£3
£5 — text SUN£5
£10 — text SUN£10
Texts cost your chosen donation amount (e.g. £5) +1 standard message (we receive 100%). For full T&Cs visit redcross.org.uk/mobile
The Ukraine Crisis Appeal will support people in areas currently affected and those potentially affected in the future by the crisis.
In the unlikely event that the British Red Cross raise more money than can be reasonably and efficiently spent, any surplus funds will be used to help them prepare for and respond to other humanitarian disasters anywhere in the world.
For more information visit https://donate.redcross.org.uk/appeal/disaster-fund