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Russian landing ship Konstantin Olshansky hit with Neptune missile, says Ukraine

by Chris York and The Kyiv Independent news desk March 26, 2024 9:51 AM 2 min read
People walk past a poster-size stamp installed in the Kyiv city center depicting Russian warships sunk after Ukrainian attacks in the Black Sea in Kyiv, Ukraine, on March 16, 2024. (Oleksii Chumachenko/Global Images Ukraine via Getty Images)
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Ukraine has claimed yet another successful strike on Russia’s Black Sea Fleet (BSF), announcing on March 26 that the landing ship Konstantin Olshansky had been hit by a Neptune missile.

Speaking on national TV, Navy spokesperson Dmytro Pletenchuk said damage to the vessel was still being determined.

In recent months, Ukraine has intensified its attacks on BSF targets in occupied Crimea, successfully targeting several ships and forcing Russian forces to redeploy to safer waters.

In comments to LIGA.net, Pletenchuk said the attack on the Konstantin Olshansky had occurred earlier this week on March 23, the same day two Russian Ropucha-class landing ships, Yamal and Azov, were hit.

Built in 1985, the Konstantin Olshansky was transferred to the Ukrainian Navy in 1996 when the naval fleet of the Soviet Union was divided up.

It was one of many Ukrainian ships seized by Russian forces during the annexation of Crimea in 2014.

“This ship was supposed to be used by Ukraine, therefore, a decision was made to destroy this unit with our Neptune,” Pletenchuk told national television.

The attack in the late hours of March 23 also hit some Black Sea Fleet infrastructure in Crimea and a Russian military communication center, the Ukrainian military said on March 24.

The Strategic Communications Center of the Armed Forces of Ukraine (StratCom) recently reported that as of early February 2024, 33% of the fleet’s warships had been disabled, including 24 ships and one submarine.Russia has taken a number of steps to address the continuing threat, including replacing the commander of the Russian Navy earlier this month.

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