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Breaking News: Ukrainian Forces Use Storm Shadow Missiles to Target Two Russian Navy Ropucha-class landing ships.

| Naval News Navy 2024

In a bold military operation carried out during the night between March 23 and 24, 2024, Ukrainian forces launched a devastating attack on key Russian naval assets in Crimea. Utilizing Storm Shadow cruise missiles, a sophisticated weapon in Kyiv's arsenal, the Ukrainian military successfully targeted and destroyed two Russian Navy Ropucha-class landing ships, the “Azov” and the “Yamal,” at their berths in the Crimean port of Sevastopol.
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Russian Vyborg Shipyard laid the Purga ice class coastguard ship of project 23550 925 001 Ukraine claims that the Azov Russian Navy landing ship was one of the two vessels destroyed by its armed forces. (Picture source:

Simultaneously, three Storm Shadow air-launched cruise missiles wrought havoc on the Russian Black Sea Fleet Communications Center in Sevastopol, further crippling the naval capabilities and infrastructure of the Russian Federation in the strategically crucial Black Sea region. The Russian-installed governor of Sevastopol, Mikhail Razvozhaev, confirmed the attack in a Telegram post on March 24, 2024, describing the offensive as a "massive overnight missile attack" by Kyiv.

This latest operation is part of a series of calculated strikes by Ukraine aimed at diminishing the maritime strength and logistical support capabilities of the Russian Navy in the Black Sea. These attacks underscore Kyiv's growing military proficiency and its determination to reclaim control over Crimea, annexed by Russia in 2014, and disrupt Russian military operations in the region.

In a recent operation, Ukrainian forces deployed naval drones to target the Sergei Kotov patrol ship in the vicinity of the Kerch Strait, which connects the Black Sea with the Sea of Azov. This was confirmed by Ukraine's military intelligence unit.

During the December 2023 offensive, Ukraine's military reported the destruction of the Novocherkassk landing ship in the port of Feodosia, Crimea, using long-range cruise missiles. The Russian Defense Ministry acknowledged that the vessel was damaged in the assault, though Russian military bloggers have claimed it was completely destroyed.

Additionally, the Ukrainian armed forces have initiated a relentless campaign of cruise missile and drone strikes against Russian radar installations, air defense systems, and air bases throughout Crimea, a territory annexed by Russia in 2014. Adding to Moscow's troubles, Ukrainian forces successfully shot down two Russian early warning and control planes over the Sea of Azov in the months of January and February, significantly impacting Russia's intelligence capabilities.

These operations are part of a series of effective Ukrainian assaults carried out earlier in the conflict. Notable among these was the sinking of the Moskva, the Black Sea fleet's flagship missile cruiser, in April 2022, and a precise missile attack on the fleet’s headquarters located in Sevastopol's port in September of the previous year.

The Ropucha-class landing ships, named “Azov” and “Yamal,” are amphibious assault vessels designed to transport troops, tanks, and equipment from sea to shore. With a displacement of around 4,000 tons and a length of 112 meters, these ships play a pivotal role in enabling naval infantry operations, including beach landings and supply missions. Their destruction represents a significant loss to the Russian naval capabilities in the theater of operations around the Black Sea.

The Storm Shadow cruise missiles, central to this operation, are long-range, air-launched precision weapons capable of striking high-value targets with remarkable accuracy. Developed jointly by the UK and France, these missiles have a range of approximately 250 kilometers and can carry a powerful conventional warhead. Their use in the attack on Russian naval assets in Crimea demonstrates Ukraine's strategic deployment of advanced weaponry to challenge Russian military dominance in the region effectively.

The Storm Shadow missiles have been delivered to Ukraine by the United Kingdom and France. The UK confirmed its delivery of these long-range missiles to Ukraine, which marked a significant enhancement of Kyiv's military capabilities, especially for targeting areas in Russian-occupied Crimea. France has also committed its SCALP missiles, which are the French equivalent of the Storm Shadow, further bolstering Ukraine's arsenal with this advanced weaponry.

This series of attacks not only signifies a tactical victory for Ukraine but also sends a clear message regarding its resilience and the evolving dynamics of the conflict in Eastern Europe. As the situation develops, the international community watches closely, understanding the implications of these strikes on the broader geopolitical landscape and the ongoing conflict between Ukraine and Russia.

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