The loss of the Moscow warship would be a huge blow to the Russian navy

Russia: Crew evacuated

“Ammunition exploded due to a fire in a cruise ship in Moscow. The ship was seriously damaged, “the Russian Ministry of Defense said in a statement quoted by the media. It adds that the cause of the fire is being investigated and that the entire crew of the ship has been evacuated.

The report does not state how many crew members were on board at the time of the incident and whether there were any deaths or injuries after the explosion.

A complete evacuation could mean that the ship will not be able to stay afloat and sink. There is no confirmation yet that this has happened. Experts interviewed by CNN said the storm raged at sea during the disaster, which could have made evacuation more difficult. According to them, an event of this magnitude and a fire could have catastrophic consequences, and the ship could sink.

Exactly where the ship was, Russian news agencies did not indicate. April 10 the cruiser was spotted in Sevastopol.

A Sky News television source said the cruiser Moscow was 25 nautical miles south of Snake Island in Odessa. Other Russian ships were sent to help.

Representatives of Ukraine announced that missiles had hit the ship

Earlier, the governor of the Odessa region said that Ukrainian forces hit the ship “Moskva” with rockets.

“The Neptun missile used to protect the Black Sea has caused very serious damage to the Russian ship. Glory to Ukraine! ”Maxim Marcenko told Telegram.

Ukraine’s adviser to the president, Oleksiy Arestovich, said something “unexpected” had happened to Moscow.

“It simply came to our notice then. Right now. As the sea is stormy, it is unclear whether they will be able to get help, “he said on a YouTube broadcast on Wednesday night.

However, nothing was announced in the morning report of the General Staff of the Ukrainian Armed Forces about the attack on the Russian ship.

The pride of the Russian navy

The Moscow was built during the Soviet era in Mykolaiv, Ukraine, and was commissioned in the early 1990s, Russian media said.

ZUMAPRESS / Scanpix nuotr./Rusijos karo laivas „Moskva“

Radio station Svoboda reports that the ship has a crew of 510 people, but there may be more. The cruiser “Moscow” is armed with anti-ship missiles “16 P-1000 Vulkan”, weapons against submarines, mines, torpedoes, reports said.

1996 the ship was taken over by the Moscow government, after which it was renamed.

The ship has a carrying capacity of 11,380 tons, a length of 186 meters and a maximum width of 20.8 meters.

The main offensive weapon of the Moscow ship was 16 P-1000 Vulkan launchers.

This cruiser has been involved in several armed conflicts, including the Russian operation in Syria. The ship was then repaired from 2017 to 2020, and the Navy refused to modernize it due to lack of funds.

Russian President Vladimir Putin and foreign leaders have repeatedly visited it.

A huge loss for Russia

If reports were confirmed that Russia had lost the cruiser “Moscow” and that it was an attack by Ukrainian forces, it would be a huge blow to the Russian navy.

“The loss of only a ballistic missile-powered submarine or Kuznetsov (Russia’s only aircraft carrier) would deal a more severe blow to Russia’s fighting spirit and naval reputation in the eyes of Russian society,” a retired U.S. naval captain, former United States Carl Schuster, Director of Operations at the Center.

Alessio Patalano, a professor of war and strategy at the Royal College in London, said the loss of the warship would be a “huge blow” to Russia.

“Ships are far from the public spotlight and their activities rarely become news. However, they are large parts of the floating national territory and, when one of them is lost, an important flagship is not only a serious military loss, but also an important political and symbolic message, ”he said.

It is a ship sent by the border guards of Snake Island

Moscow became famous at the start of the war when it appealed to the Ukrainian border guards, who defended the strategically important Snake Island, and demanded that they surrender, but in response, the famous phrase “Russkij korabl, idi nachui” was received.

It was initially thought that the Ukrainian soldiers who sent the Russian warship were killed, but later it turned out that some of them had been taken prisoner.

In late March, they were released during an exchange of prisoners, according to the Ukrainian parliament.

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