Ukraine destroys two Russian boats in Crimea

Ukraine has waged a highly effective asymmetric-warfare campaign against the Black Sea Fleet with Magura naval attack drones, Ukraine officials report. However, Russia states it has fought off the latest attacks by Ukraine naval drones by destroying six Ukrainian uncrewed surface vehicles near the coast of the Crimean peninsula.

Magura maritime attack drones equipped with R-73 have already been employed in combat operations in the Black Sea, which has become a serious factor of fear and risk for Russian aviation, the Main Intelligence Directorate of Ukraine’s Defense Ministry reported last week, with reference to the commander of the Group 13 special operations unit.

On May 30, 2024, a special unit of the Defence Intelligence of Ukraine Group 13, using Magura V5 naval attack drones, carried out a significant attack on the Russian navy.

Ukraine says Magura maritime strike drones have already proven their effectiveness as they deprived Russia of dominance in the Black Sea and reduced threats to Ukraine.

“The Russians are very afraid of them. When they see them, they are afraid to even fly anywhere close. And the uniqueness is that no one has such a thing. […] This weaponry has already been installed, and it will produce results,” the commander noted.

The commander of “Group 13” also recalled his emotions when the Magura he was piloting hit one of the Russia’s ships.

“This is an adrenaline boost. Palms get sweaty. At the same time, the drone must be controlled quite delicately, I’d say, gently. Movements mustn’t be sharp or uncontrolled. Everything must be smooth,” the officer explained.

Russia, however, claimed that during the week 15 to 21 of June, the Black Sea Fleet destroyed six Ukrainian uncrewed surface vehicles near the coast of the Crimean peninsula.

Furthermore, warships of Russia’s Pacific Fleet have carried out artillery firing targeting aerial and maritime targets as part of bilateral exercise of Pacific Fleet group of forces in Sea of Okhotsk and Sea of Japan, as Russia’s defence ministry reported on Monday.

The planned bilateral exercise takes place from 18 to 28 June in the waters of Pacific Ocean, Sea of Japan, and Sea of Okhotsk.

Up to 40 ships, motorboats, logistic vessels, and 20 aircraft and helicopters of the Pacific Fleet Naval Aviation were deployed during the drills.

The exercise also involves units of the Pacific Fleet Marines, and crews of the Bal and Bastion coastal missile systems.

Deck helicopters of the Pacific Fleet Primorsky Flotilla of Combined Forces carried out reconnaissance and searched for mock enemy forces at sea.

“In order to protect themselves from uncrewed boats of a mock enemy, sailors practised organisation of camouflage with the help of smoke screens,” the ministry said in its statement.