The Russian navy has withdrawn from around Ukraine over the past month, but it still isn’t safe at its new anchorage in the eastern Black Sea warns President Volodymyr Zelensky, saying they will still be in range of the country’s newly acquired long-range missiles.
The Russian Black Sea Fleet — “functionally” defeated by Ukraine already, according to a British reckoning — has been repositioned to a new base in Georgia to escape strikes by Ukrainian forces, but even this won’t save them, a warning states. Making an address on Tuesday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky vowed his forces would continue to strike using missiles and drones.
Hailing his own “historic achievement” of driving the Black Sea Fleet away from Sevastopol with a series of highly publicised strikes using British and French-donated cruise missiles, Zelensky said Russian dominance had once appeared “insurmountable”. “Now, the illusions are fading away”, he said.
The moment of a missile hit the headquarters of the Russian Black Sea Fleet
Some Ukrainian media are reporting that Russian Black Sea Fleet Commander Sokolov may have been killed as a result of an AFU missile strike. However, there is no official confirmation of this information… pic.twitter.com/j9pSZt03uC
— NEXTA (@nexta_tv) September 22, 2023
Speaking of the retreat by the Black Sea Fleet to a more distant anchorage, the Ukrainian President continued: “This is a historic achievement. Recently, the Russian leadership was forced to announce the creation of a new base for the Black Sea Fleet – or what’s left of it – on the occupied territory of Georgia.” This move was intended to put the Russian ships “as far as possible from Ukrainian missiles and naval drones”, but despite that, he said, “we will reach them everywhere”.
There are no safe bases for Russia in the Black Sea anymore, Ukrinform reported he said, and that while Zelensky acknowledged he had not yet gained “full fire control over Crimea and its adjacent waters”, this was just a matter of time.
As previously reported, the strikes against Russia’s fleet by donated missiles in Ukraine’s hands had inflicted a tactical defeat on the navy, as it was forced to withdraw its ships from theatre, meaning they were no longer able to actively engage in the conflict on Moscow’s side. This, an intelligence digest said, amounted to a “functional defeat” of the fleet.
Ukraine Has Functionally Defeated the Russian Black Sea Fleet, Says Britainhttps://t.co/L8BVo65Xvk
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) October 4, 2023