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Ukraine says it destroyed Russian Black Sea Fleet’s minesweeper Kovrovets

Ukrainian Armed Forces report the destruction of the Russian Black Sea Fleet’s minesweeper Kovrovets. Earlier Ukraine’s Navy said a third of Russia’s warships in the Black Sea were destroyed or damaged.
ukraine destroyed russian black sea fleet's minesweeper kovrovets mine sweeper
Russian Black Sea Fleet’s Kovrovets minesweeper. Photo: X/@DefenceU
Ukraine says it destroyed Russian Black Sea Fleet’s minesweeper Kovrovets

Overnight on 19 May, the Ukrainian Defense Forces destroyed the 266-M Kovrovets, a Russian Black Sea Fleet minesweeper, as reported by the Ukrainian Navy on Telegram.

In March, the Ukrainian Navy reported that a third of the Russian warships in the Black Sea have been destroyed or disabled. With Ukraine’s Navy virtually non-existent, Ukraine employs missiles and the newly-created fleet of various maritime suicide drones to counter Russia’s dominance in the Black Sea. These tactics led to the destruction or severe damage to at least 17 vessels of Russia’s Black Sea Fleet, including the sinking of the Moskva, the Fleet’s flagship, early in the all-out war.

Last night, the Ukrainian Defense Forces destroyed the 266-M Kovrovets naval minesweeper of the Russian Black Sea Fleet. The Navy of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, together with their brothers-in-arms, continue to bring us closer to Victory,” the statement reads.

The Kovrovets (hull number 913) is a Project 266M Natya class minesweeper. It is designed for mine sweeping operations, including guiding ships through minefields, reconnaissance, control sweeping, and laying mines far from its bases. Prior to Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine, the Kovrovets has participated in Russia’s military operations in Syria, conducting mine sweeping in Syrian waters.

The Natya class minesweepers, designated by NATO as Project 266M Akvamarin, are a series of Soviet minesweepers built in the 1970s and 1980s. These ships were used for ocean minesweeping.

On 29 October 2022, the Russian minesweeper Ivan Golubets, also a Project 266M vessel, was damaged in Sevastopol following an attack by Ukrainian surface marine drones.

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