In the early hours of 13 September Ukraine launched a missile strike on the Russian Black Sea Fleet in Sevastopol using British made Storm Shadow cruise missiles.
British officials have said on Friday that the attack led to Russian Navy’s Kilo-class submarine, Rostov-na-Donu severely damaged.
British officials said that the Russian sub suffered “catastrophic” damage and the Ukrainian missile strike completely destroyed a Russian landing ship.
Read more on Russia-Ukraine war:
However, military officials in Crimea have tried to play down the deadly strikes which caused damage to both the Rostov-na-Donu sub and the landing ship, Minsk.
The British Ministry of Defence (MoD) said in their latest intelligence report on Friday, “Open-source evidence indicates the Minsk has almost certainly been functionally destroyed, while the Rostov has likely suffered catastrophic damage.
“Any effort to return the submarine to service is likely to take many years and cost hundreds of millions of dollars.”
There is a “realistic possibility” the dry docks will be out of action for “many months” whilst they clear away the wreckage from the Minsk and the Rostov-na-Donu.
The MoD added, “This would present the BSF with a significant challenge in sustaining fleet maintenance.
“The loss of the Rostov removes one of the BSF’s four cruise-missile capable submarines which have played a major role in striking Ukraine and projecting Russian power across the Black Sea and Eastern Mediterranean.”
Moscow has claimed that a Russian serviceman helped Ukraine to plan the attack on the Black Sea Fleet in Crimea.
The Kyiv Post was told by a spokesperson for ATESH, a Ukrainian-Crimean Tatar movement said a member of the naval fleet and local citizens had provided details of the landing ship and the Kilo-class submarine.
“Much of the information was received from ordinary residents of Sevastopol, who constantly send us information about Russian troops,” the spokesperson said.