Russia failed to evacuate flagship Moskva crew due to storm, Ukraine’s border guards say

16 April, 01:51 PM
Flagship Moskva (Photo:REUTERS/Yoruk Isik)

Flagship Moskva (Photo:REUTERS/Yoruk Isik)

Russia failed to evacuate the crew of the sunken Russian guided missile cruiser the Moskva due to the storm, Natalia Humeniuk, the press secretary of the Coast Guard of the State Border Guard Service of Ukraine, has said, the BBC's Russian Service reported on April 15.

"The (missile) hit led to the detonation of ammunition and the struggle for survival began. We watched other ships try to help, but even the forces of nature were on Ukraine's side," she said.

Humeniuk said that the storm had prevented a rescue operation or the evacuation of the crew. According to the press secretary, the damage to the ship was so severe that the ship's combat capability was completely lost.

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The Moskva, the flagship of the Russian Black Sea Fleet, was reported to have been hit by two Ukrainian-made Neptune anti-ship missiles fired from a Ukrainian coastal battery on April 13.

Late on April 14, Russia's Defense Ministry announced that the cruiser had sunk. The Russians also claimed that they had evacuated the crew.

Forbes Ukraine estimates the value of the Moskva to be around $750 million, making it Russia's most expensive single loss of equipment in the war by a large margin.

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