Ukrainian officials claim Russia has lost more than 29,000 troops and thousands of military vehicles, including hundreds of tanks, jets and helicopters.
While Western intelligence chiefs put the figure of Russian dead closer to 20,000 – which is still more than the 15,000 the country lost during its 10-year war in Afghanistan.
Lord West warned the change in the Kremlin’s military strategy to target smaller areas in Ukraine could prove more deadly – with the former First Sea Lord now urging Western leaders to send more hi-tech weapons to Kyiv.
Speaking in the House of Lords, the retired naval officer said: ‘It is quite clear that the early euphoria about how Ukraine is doing must now be tempered. There is no doubt that the Russians have twigged what a shambles they have made of this and are now focusing on much smaller areas; for example, in the Donbass.
‘This war will grind on and Putin shows no desire to have some form of agreement. We know that he behaves appallingly and that Russia lies about these things.
‘That means that this war will continue because he will not come to the table until he finds that it is causing real pain and the sanctions start to hit. It is therefore important that we keep supplying weapons to Ukraine and keep up that flow.’
As previously reported, Britain has already sent thousands of weapons to Ukraine to help the country repel Russian advances.
Since Vladimir Putin launched his invasion in February, the UK has sent over the state-of-the-art Starstreak air defence system from Thorney Island as part of a £100m package of support and 5,000 NLAW anti-tank weapons.
Russian forces have stepped up attacks in last eastern strongholds in a bid to take to Donbas region.
Ukraine’s foreign minister warned that without a new injection of foreign weapons, Ukrainian forces wouldn’t be able to stop Russia from seizing the key cities of Sievierodonetsk and Lysychansk.