26 December 2023






2 mins

On Boxing Day of 2023 , Ukraine appears to have effectively destroyed another Russian Black Sea Fleet vessel – the Ropucha Class  landing ship RFS NOVOCHERKASSK. She was berthed in Feodosia in occupied Crimea when she was struck by aircraft-launched cruise missiles at around 0230 hrs.Photos posted on the Telegram channel by Ukraine’s Southern Defense Forces showed what was said to be the RFS NOVOCHERKASSK  in flames and subsequently what was captioned as “The ‘minor’ damage to the large landing ship Novocherkassk… Or, rather, her minor remains.”Remains of Novocherkassk after missile strikeA report in the New York Times quotes Ukraine’s military as saying that it suspected that the ship was carrying Iranian-made attack drones for use in the war, with Natalia Humeniuk, a spokeswoman for the Ukrainian army in the south, telling national television that “it is clear that such a large detonation was caused not just by fuel or ammunition of the ship itself.” Andrii Klymenko, the head of the Black Sea Institute of Strategic Studies, agreed. “Judging by the video of the explosion, which was very powerful, she was carrying explosives: either shells or missiles, or, as some people say, drones,” he wrote in a text message.“This latest destruction of Putin’s navy demonstrates that those who believe there’s a stalemate in the Ukraine war are wrong!,” said U.K. Secretary of Defence Grant Schapps in a post on X (formerly Twitter). “They haven’t noticed that over the past 4 months 20% of Russia’s Black Sea Fleet has been destroyed.”

Delivered by the Stocznia Północna shipyard in Gdańsk, Poland, in 1987 as yard number 142, she was commissioned on 30th November 1987. She was also reported as being damaged  in a March 22, 2022,  in the same war.

The Russian version of things from the state-controlled TASS new agency said, in part:

“A missile strike by the Ukrainian armed forces on Feodosia, Crimea, has killed one person and left two others wounded, and damaged the Novocherkassk, a Russian Navy amphibious assault landing ship, the Russian Defense Ministry said.

“According to the ministry, the two Ukrainian air force Su-24 fighter jets that attacked Feodosia were shot down some 125 kilometers northeast of the city of Nikolayev.”

Ukrainian sources later denied that the two jets had been shot down.

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