On 26 December at around 2:50 a.m. Kyiv time, numerous videos emerged on social media showing a large fire in the port of Feodosia in the east of occupied Crimea. Local sources claimed there were hits that started the fire.
Explosions followed by fires and the sounds of secondary detonations are reported in occupied Feodosia, eastern Crimea— Euromaidan Press (@EuromaidanPress) December 26, 2023
This may be another Ukrainian air or sea attack targeting the Russian Navy. As of now, no further details have emerged.
📹 via https://t.co/odDrHbWhhK pic.twitter.com/LMOMOIKbxv
Later footage showed a massive secondary explosion:
Feodosia, occupied Crimea (source: Russian Telegram channel Astra): pic.twitter.com/bbGbvtqgJ8— English Luhansk (@loogunda) December 26, 2023
At 3:16 a.m., Sergey Aksyonov, the head of Russia’s occupation administration of Crimea, confirmed the attack on Feodosia Port, claiming that the fire was localized and the detonation stopped:
“There was an enemy attack in the area of Feodosia. The port area is cordoned off. At the moment the detonation has stopped, the fire has been localised. All relevant services are working on the site. Residents of several houses will be evacuated,” the quisling official wrote on Telegram.
At 03:47, Lt-Gen Mykola Oleshchuk, Ukraine’s Air Force commander shared footage from Feodosia and reported that Ukrainian pilots destroyed the Russian Navy’s Novocherkassk large landing ship:
“And Russia’s fleet is getting smaller and smaller!
“This time, the flagship of the Russian Black Sea Fleet, the cruiser Moskva (destroyed in 2022, – Ed.), is followed by the large lanfing craft ‘Novocherkassk.’ I thank the pilots of the Air Force and everyone involved for their filigree work!” Oleshchuk wrote.
The involvement of the Air Force of Ukraine implies the use of the Storm Shadow/SCALP-EG missiles in the attack.
Mykola Oleshchuk, Commander of the Ukrainian Air Force, confirmed the destruction of the landing ship "Novocherkassk" in Feodosia. Analyzing the explosion video, I cross-referenced it with sat imagery from 24.12, verifying the presence of the Ropucha-class landing ship pic.twitter.com/plpf4pln7f— Tatarigami_UA (@Tatarigami_UA) December 26, 2023
The Novocherkassk was earlier damaged in Berdiansk port in March 2022, another large landing ship, Saratov, was destroyed in the same attack.
Earlier, Navy spokesman Dmytro Pletenchuk said that Ukrainian forces were responsible for the destruction of 15 Russian warships in the Black Sea, with an additional 12 suffering damage since the beginning of the full-scale invasion.
The Russian Black Sea Fleet suffered the most significant blow in April 2022, marked by the sinking of its flagship, the Moskva cruiser, after being struck by two Ukrainian Neptune missiles.
In September 2023, a Ukrainian missile attack destroyed the Russian landing ship Minsk and submarine Rostov-on-Don in the Sevastopol shipyard in occupied Crimea. In the same month, the Russian Black Sea Fleet’s headquarters in Sevastopol, occupied Crimea, was destroyed by Ukrainian missiles.
Update: The time of the attack has been changed in the article based on the latest reports.
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