Damage to warship in Black Sea confirmed by Russia
A damage assessment of one of Russia’s warships has been conducted in response to the Ukrainian assault on a Black Sea port. The area occupied by Russia in Crimea at the time of the Tuesday morning airstrike was Feodosiya.
The large landing ship Novocherkassk was attacked by Ukrainian aircraft carrying guided missiles, according to the Russian Ministry of Defence. In a previous statement, the Ukrainian Air Force commander claimed that its aircraft had caused the destruction of the vessel.
The assault resulted in one fatality, as reported by Sergei Aksyonov, the leader of Crimea installed by Russia. Transport operations at the port have reportedly resumed as usual since the fire caused by the attack was contained and the area was cordoned off.
Lt. Gen. Mykola Oleshchuk of the Ukrainian Air Force purportedly disseminated video footage depicting a tremendous explosion that occurred in the port.
The images have not undergone any independent verification. However, satellite imagery from December 24th indicates the presence of a vessel at Feodosiya that appears to be of comparable size to the Novocherkassk. This vessel has been purposefully designed to transport cargo, personnel, and supplies to the shore.
Former NATO analyst and security and defence expert Patrick Bury told the sources that there were rumours the vessel was transporting Shahed drones manufactured in Iran, which Russia has been employing in its assaults on Ukrainian targets.
Nataliya Humenyuk, the director of the press centre for Ukraine’s southern command, stated on Ukrainian television that it was “obvious that the ship’s fuel and ammunition were not the only factors contributing to such a massive explosion.”
According to Ms. Humenyuk, Russia has encountered challenges in transporting “critical cargo” as a result of the damage to the Kerch Bridge, which connects Russia to the Crimean Peninsula.
The exact timeframe for the operational disruption and the tangible consequences of this strike on the front lines are still unknown. In the interim, an air force spokesman for Ukraine refuted reports that two Su-24 bombers were shot down by Russia approximately 125 kilometres (77 miles) from the Ukrainian city of Mykolaiv.
Ukraine has implemented the region as a defensive barrier ever since 2014, when fighters supported by Russia captured extensive portions of the Donetsk and Luhansk areas.
Tuesday’s assault on Feodosiya is not the first time that Novocherkassk has been the target of Ukrainian forces. The Ukrainian Ministry of Defence recorded the vessel’s damage in March 2022 as a consequence of an assault on the occupied Ukrainian port of Berdyansk. Another amphibious assault vessel, the Saratov, was also destroyed during the assault.
Lieutenant General Oleshchuk stated in a Telegram message that the Novocherkassk had followed in the footsteps of the Moskva, the flagship of the Russian Black Sea Fleet, which capsized in the Black Sea a year ago.
In reference to other Russian vessels that have been submerged throughout the conflict, President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky made light of the air force’s remarkable addition of another vessel to the Russian submarine Black Sea fleet by jokingly expressing his “gratitude.”
The Crimean Peninsula, which was seized and annexed by Russia from Ukraine in 2014, was strategically utilised by its forces during the comprehensive invasion of Ukraine in February 2022.