The attack on Sevastopol, the headquarters of the Black Sea Fleet in Moscow, came as Russian and Ukrainian forces were fighting in the southeast.
The Russian Navy has launched drone strikes in Sevastopol Bay, home of Moscow’s Black Sea Fleet in Moscow’s annexed Crimea, according to a statement by the Russian-resident governor as the battle for control of the city in southeastern Ukraine rages on. “Repulsed” the attack. Kherson and Bahmut.
“From 4:30 am today, for several hours, various air defense systems of Sevastopol repelled the drone attack,” Sevastopol Governor Mikhail Razbodjayev told Telegram early on Saturday. “All UAVs[unmanned aerial vehicles]have been shot down,” he added.
“Nothing has been attacked in the city. We are calm. The situation is under control.”
The attack on Sevastopol, Crimea’s largest city, comes as Ukrainian forces are engaged in heavy fighting with Russian forces in Kherson Oblast, the gateway to Crimea. Russia annexed Crimea from Ukraine in 2014.
Moscow has accused Britain of helping Ukraine plan a drone attack on the Black Sea Fleet in the Crimean port of Sevastopol, saying one of its ships suffered “minor” damage.
“The preparation of this terrorist act and the training of military personnel of the 73rd Special Center for Maritime Operations of Ukraine were carried out under the guidance of British experts in the city of Ochakiv, Mikolayiv region of Ukraine,” said the Moscow Defense Ministry. said. statement on Saturday.
Since launching a counteroffensive late last month, Ukrainian forces have recaptured vast territories from Russian forces, including in Kharkov, pushing Russians back. With the war situation reversing, Russian President Vladimir Putin called for a partial mobilization of the military and a reorganization of military leadership.
Last month, Moscow blamed Ukraine after an explosion partially damaged a key bridge connecting Crimea with mainland Russia. Kyiv denies any role in the attacks that prompted Russia’s retaliation.
Russia then carried out massive airstrikes and drone strikes across Ukraine, damaging more than a third of its power infrastructure. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said on Friday that about 4 million Ukrainians had lost power as a result of the attacks.
Al Jazeera’s Harry Fawcett reports from Kyiv that the Russian campaign in recent weeks has been highly methodical, targeting small substations feeding the grid rather than large facilities. said there is.
“With the recent resumption of strikes in cities and increasing pressure on civilian infrastructure, war is getting closer and closer,” he said.
With Soviet-era facilities in use and parts difficult to replace, restoring supply has proven difficult, Fawcett added.
Russia says soldiers are close to Bakhmut
Moscow, meanwhile, claims its soldiers are slowly approaching the eastern Ukrainian city of Bakhmut, located in the eastern region of Ukraine.
Taking Bakhmut cuts off Ukrainian supply lines and opens the way for Russian forces to advance towards Kramatorsk and Sloviansk. Kramatorsk and Slovyansk, important Ukrainian strongholds in the Donetsk region, were annexed by Moscow last month, along with Luhansk, Kherson and Zaporizhia.
Local officials said they had temporarily stopped crossing the Sevastopol Bay for ferries and boats, according to Reuters.
Moscow said on Saturday that accelerating the deployment of modernized US B61 tactical nuclear weapons to NATO bases in Europe would lower the “nuclear threshold” and that Russia would take the move into account in its military plans. .
Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister Alexander Glushko told the state-run RIA news agency that “we cannot ignore plans to modernize nuclear weapons, free-falling bombs, in Europe.”
Moscow forces attacked Ukraine from multiple directions, including Crimea, when it invaded Ukraine in February.
Earlier this week, Razvozhayev said a drone struck a thermal power plant near Sevastopol.
A Russian fleet stationed in the port was also hit by drones in July.