Vladimir Putin has lost another top general ‘in a strike by British supplied Storm Shadow missiles’, according to both Ukrainian and Russian sources.
Lieutenant-General Oleg Tsokov, 51, was personally known to the dictator and had been sanctioned by Britain and the EU for his role in the war against Ukraine. A Ukrainian claim today that the commander had been ‘liquidated’ was later supported by Russian channels with key military links.
Pro-war Russian Telegram channel Voenkory Russkoy Vesny admitted that ‘as a result of the attack by Storm Shadow cruise missiles on the command post of the 58th Army in the Berdiansk region, Lt-Gen Oleg Tsokov […] was killed.’
‘Colleagues speak of Tsokov as a competent officer and a good commander.’
Lt-General Oleg Tsokov, 51, is reported to be have been killed by Ukrainian Armed Forces. Lt-Gen Oleg Tsokov was the deputy commander of the Southern Military District. Russian outlet VChK-OGPU said he had been killed in a strike on the reserve command post of the 58th Army in Berdiansk.
Earlier, a Ukrainian official also said the Russian general had been ‘liquidated’ by Kyiv’s armed forces around Berdiansk without saying how he was killed. Berdiansk, a strategically important port on the Sea of Azov in Zaporizhzhia region, has been hit in recent weeks by the Ukrainians deploying UK-supplied Storm Shadow missiles.
The missiles have a 155-mile range, further than other Western-supplied weapons in Ukraine’s hands. New explosions were reported today with smoke seen rising over the city, a key access point to annexed Crimea.
Russian outlet Readovka reported these were new Storm Shadow strikes, but there was no immediate confirmation. The supply of Storm Stream missiles to Ukraine was confirmed by the UK government – which holds an estimated 700 to 1,000 – in May 2023.
Defence Secretary Ben Wallace confirmed the missiles had already been used by Ukraine on 18 May – but declined to give further details. The £ 2.2 million-per-unit missiles will allow Ukrainian forces to strike deeper into Russian-held territory. They were suspected to have been used when Russian MP Viktor Vodolatsky sustained injuries after an attack on May 15.
General Tsokov was earlier wounded in Luhansk in September 2022 but returned to the front. Tsokov was the commander of Vladimir Putin’s 144th motorized rifle division of the 20th combined arms army.
One month ago it was reported that Major-General Sergey Goryachev, 52, died in a strike in the same Zaporizhzhia region. He was Chief of Staff of the Russian 35th Combined Arms Army. If Tsokov’s death is confirmed, it means Putin has lost up to a dozen generals.
He was sanctioned by Britain in December 2022 among a group of a dozen top brass ‘implicated in attacks on Ukrainian cities’.
A video shows the general addressing Putin at a ceremony in the Kremlin in 2021. He thanked Putin for his ‘personal…close attention’ which enabled the Russian war machine to ‘master the most modern ammunition and military equipment’.
Tsokov was married, and a father to two children.
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