Russia says flagship missile cruise ship has sunk after fire

Ukrainian officials say their forces hit the vessel with missiles



The Russian missile cruiser Moskva patrols in the Mediterranean Sea in this file photo. – AFP
The Russian missile cruiser Moskva patrols in the Mediterranean Sea in this file photo. – AFP

By AFP

Published: Fri 15 Apr 2022, 12:24 AM

Last updated: Fri 15 Apr 2022, 1:32 AM

Russia’s defence ministry said the missile cruiser Moskva, the flagship of Russia’s Black Sea fleet, sank as it was towed back to port in stormy weather following an explosion and fire, Russian news agencies reported on Thursday.

The defence ministry had said earlier on Thursday that the Soviet-era ship had been badly damaged by the fire, which Ukraine said was a result of its missile strike.

Ukrainian officials say their forces hit the vessel with missiles.

The warship was 60 to 65 nautical miles south of Odesa when the fire ignited, and the vessel was still battling flames hours later while heading east, according to a Pentagon official.

Russia said the fire aboard the ship, which would typically have 500 sailors on board, forced the entire crew to evacuate.

The ship can carry 16 long-range cruise missiles, and its removal from combat would greatly reduce Russia’s firepower in the Black Sea.


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