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British Defense Ministry: Russia enhances defense of Novorossiysk Sea Port in Black Sea Fleet from Ukrainian strikes

Russian 4 barges positioned at Novorossiysk port entrance to protect Black Sea Fleet assets after increased risk of Ukrainian strikes in Sevastopol
russian novorossiysk Sea port
Russia’s Novorossiyak Sea Port in Black Sea Fleet. Credit: British Defense Ministry
British Defense Ministry: Russia enhances defense of Novorossiysk Sea Port in Black Sea Fleet from Ukrainian strikes

The British Defense Ministry reported on 28 March that recent imagery showed four barges positioned at the entrance to the Black Sea Fleet facility of Novorossiysk Sea Port.

Russia is trying to protect its facilities in the Black Sea Fleet port against attacks from Ukrainian Uncrewed Surface Vessels (USVs), according to the British Defense Ministry.

The report notes, “Due to an increased risk of Ukrainian strikes in their traditional homeport of Sevastopol, Novorossiysk port now serves a crucial role in sheltering the Black Sea Fleet’s most valuable assets.”

As a result of Ukrainian successes using USVs, the former Black Sea Fleet commander Admiral Viktor Sokolov was replaced. His successor, Vice Admiral Sergei Pinchuk, has “likely sought to improve the survival chances of Russian vessels by adopting further preventative and defensive measures, including narrowing the entrance gap to port facilities,” the British Defense Ministry reported states.

Ukraine recently increased its long-range strikes with drones and cruise missiles on the Black Sea Fleet to push Russian ships further away from the Ukrainian coast. It led to substantial vessel losses for Russia in the Black Sea.

Ukrainian forces have disabled approximately 33% of all combat ships in the Russian Black Sea Fleet since the start of the full-scale invasion, according to the Strategic Communications of the Armed Forces of Ukraine.

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