Espreso. Global

Ukrainian drones strike Russian patrol boat Sergei Kotov in Crimea

5 March, 2024 Tuesday

On the night of Tuesday, March 5, Ukrainian servicemen attacked Sergei Kotov, the patrol ship of the Russian Navy in the temporarily occupied Crimea. There are dead and wounded among the crew

Ukraine's Defense Intelligence confirmed the information.

According to preliminary intelligence, Russia lost 7 crew members, 6 more were wounded, and 52 were likely evacuated.

It is noted that the Russian ship off the coast of the peninsula was attacked by a special unit of the HUR Group 13. The mission was conducted in cooperation with the Ukrainian Navy and with the support of the Ministry of Digital Transformation of Ukraine.

According to intelligence, due to the strike by Magura V5 maritime drones, the Russian ship Project 22160 sustained damage to the stern, starboard and port sides. 

Sergei Kotov was hit in the territorial waters of Ukraine, near the Kerch Strait. The cost of the sunken ship is about $65 million.

Later, a representative of the Defence Intelligence of Ukraine, Andriy Yusov, told Radio Liberty that the Sergei Kotov was destroyed and that there were dead sailors among the crew.

"The military conducted a brilliant operation, and this time the Sergei Kotov is definitely destroyed. It was not the first time it was hunted, and there have been successful attacks, but it was able to recover after repair work," he said.

According to Yusov, the sunken Russian ship in February 2022 took part in the attack on Zmiinyi Island together with the already liquidated cruiser Moskva, and it was also planned to deploy anti-aircraft missile systems.

The Ukrainian intelligence official emphasized that it was not a random attack, but a long-term operation. 

"Five direct hits (by naval drones - ed.) do not happen by chance," he said.

As for the crew, Yusov said, the situation is being clarified. 

"There are dead and wounded. However, there is a possibility that some of the crew could have evacuated. At least we know about more than ten ambulances that were called by the enemy on the nearest land area. That is, the evacuation operation was still carried out," he said.

Ukrainian Navy confirms the liquidation of the Russian patrol ship. According to them, at the time of the attack, the Sergei Kotov was in Ukrainian territorial waters near the Kerch Strait.

"This is not the first time the Ukrainian Defense Forces have attacked this ship - in September last year, during an attack on Russian Navy ships, the Sergei Kotov was already heavily damaged," the Navy added.

The military emphasizes that this ship design is one of the most modern in Russia. So far, four such ships have been launched - Vasily Bykov, Dmitry Rogachev, Pavel Derzhavin, and Sergei Kotov. So far, only the Dmitry Rogachev has not been damaged.

Information about the ship's destruction is confirmed by Russian propaganda media as well. Military officer Borys Rozhyn writes that a patrol ship was lost during a night battle in Feodosia: "The crew took measures to fight for the ship's survivability, but they did not yield results. Obviously, the system when ships have to fight off drones with machine guns in close combat is insufficient."

Military blogger Oleksandr Kots also writes that the Sergei Kotov fought off the attack, but "the story does not have a happy ending." The destruction of the ship was also confirmed by the Dva Maiora channel.

The day before, Russian media reported that at night the temporarily occupied Crimea was attacked by missiles and drones, and the Crimean Bridge was blocked for hours. The Russian Defense Ministry did not comment on the situation.

For reference. Sergey Kotov is the third production patrol ship of the 22160 project, which joined the Russian Black Sea Fleet on July 30, 2022. The sea trials of Sergei Kotov began at the end of October 2021.

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