The attack by Ukraine on the headquarters of Russia’s Black Sea fleet in Crimea appears to be the most significant assault on Russian naval objectives so far in the war.
Russia’s defence ministry said 10 missiles and three drones were used in the attack, in which British cruise missiles played a part.
The pre-dawn onslaught on the shipyard damaged a Russian submarine and cruiser. The Minsk, a Project 775 Ropucha-class large landing ship of the Russian Baltic fleet, was recognised as the landing craft.
Military analyst Rob Lee uploaded a number of videos and pictures to social media that purported to depict the strike.
He cited another social media outlet as saying that the submarine, the Rostov-on-Don, belonging to the Black Sea fleet’s Project 636.3 diesel-powered kilo class, was the one in the dry dock. The strike is understood to be the first on a Russian submarine by Ukrainian forces.
A # of Russian Telegram channels posted videos of explosions and a fire reportedly at the 13th Ship Repair Plant in Sevastopol, possibly from a missile strike. https://t.co/Pr645WM7Kthttps://t.co/6vKPel4yhthttps://t.co/jXTfViRBy9https://t.co/6AQB0skAdKhttps://t.co/p13j5iL0gt pic.twitter.com/Fgg1FTPKkn
— Rob Lee (@RALee85) September 13, 2023
At least 24 people were hurt, according to Mikhail Razvozhayev, the governor of Sevastopol, the largest city in Crimea and a significant Black Sea port. The mayor was installed by Moscow.
“All emergency services are working on the site, there is no danger to civilian objects in the city,” Mr Razvozhayev wrote.
How many submarines does Russia have?
Russia has a total of 66 submarines, according to Wikipedia. Here is a breakdown of them:
12 ballistic missile submarines
10 cruise missile submarines
14 nuclear attack submarines
22 diesel attack submarines
Eight special-purpose submarines
Submarines are a part of the naval fleets of 42 nations throughout the world. Superpowers like Russia, United States and China are among them, as are less developed states like Cuba and Myanmar. Submarines are employed for a range of tasks but their main uses are military and strategic.
North Korea, the United States, China and Russia are the countries with the most submarines, and have made significant investments in their navies.
During Ukraine's conflict with Russia, which began with the invasion in February 24, 2022, Ukraine has received substantial amounts of military hardware from allies around the world, but one thing it lacks is a submarine.
According to a Forbes story, Russia gave Ukraine a Foxtrot-class submarine in 1997 but took it back after it claimed Crimea in 2014.