Ukraine fires drones over Black Sea and Crimea as Putin’s attacks fail in Bakhmut

Top Kyiv military official recently said Crimea would be subject to renewed aerial bombardment

Arpan Rai
Tuesday 07 November 2023 08:49 GMT
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Ukraine fired 17 drones over the Black Sea and the Crimean peninsula in an early morning attack on Tuesday, the Russian defence ministry said.

The drone attack targeted Sevastopol, Russian-backed officials said. Sevastopol, Crimea’s largest city, is home to Russia’s naval headquarters where it has parked its Black Sea fleet.

Russia claims its air defence systems destroyed nine of the drones, while eight were intercepted.

Ukraine has said focusing on Crimea has helped its continuing counteroffensive against Moscow. Kyiv does not claim real-time responsibility for attacks on Russia and Russian-controlled territories, while Moscow has often denied serious casualties and consistently blames Ukraine.

Kyiv has been gearing up to launch a major winter drone offensive against Russia’s ongoing invasion once harsh winter conditions hamper ground attacks, a top military official had told The Independent recently.

Brigadier General Serhiy Baranov, the chief of the military unit overseeing drone operations, had warned Crimea, that was illegally annexed by Russia in 2014, and border areas within Russia would be subject to renewed aerial bombardment.

The debris from one falling drone on Tuesday landed on the roof of a private house in the village of Andriivka in Sevastopol’s suburbs, briefly setting it on fire, said Mikhail Razvozhayev, the Russian-installed governor of the Black Sea port of Sevastopol.

On the battlefield and vast frontline, the fighting continues to be limited to firing and counter-firing between both sides in the past 24 hours as Russian forces lost hundreds of its troops on the southern axis of fighting.

Russian forces used fresh warfare tactics by attacking at night in foggy conditions in southern Ukraine’s Tavriia but retreated after losing some of their equipment, said Kyiv commander Oleksandr Tarnavskyi.

“So, the other day, the enemy made an attempt to storm forward positions of paratroopers of the 79th Airborne Assault Brigade of the Ukrainian Armed Forces at night under the cover of fog,” the top official said.

Ukrainian soldiers also repelled five Russian attacks in the Bakhmut region in the past 24 hours, the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine said in a daily update on Tuesday morning.

“The enemy made unsuccessful attempts to regain the lost ground in the vicinity of Andriivka,” the update said, referring to another village of the same name in Ukraine’s war-torn Bakhmut.

“In turn, the Ukrainian Defence Forces continue assault operations south of Bakhmut (Donetsk oblast), inflict losses on manpower and equipment on the enemy, and consolidate their new positions,” it added.

Ukrainian forces are doing well on the Tavriia and Avdiivka axis, it said, adding that they are standing their ground and inflicting major losses on the enemy. In Avdiivka, that has been subject to intense fighting, Ukrainian Defence Forces repelled more than 20 attacks.

This comes as Russian military bloggers claimed Moscow is no closer to victory in Ukraine. They have expressed concerns that Russian forces will likely face a renewed Ukrainian counteroffensive in the winter, said the Institute for the Study of War.

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