The Russian president has left again red-faced after reports that his naval commanders blew up one of their own ships in a friendly fire fiasco.
Russian President Vladimir Putin has turned red again amid reports that his Russian naval commanders blew up one of their own ships in a friendly fire fiasco.
A D-106 landing craft is believed to have exploded when it accidentally hit a Russian naval mine near Mariupol, in the Black Sea.
Though the embarrassment is likely tempered by claims that Moscow has taken the city of Lysychansk in the Donbas, putting it in control of virtually the entire Luhansk region of eastern Ukraine.
According to a Telegram channel associated with the Russian Navy: “At Mariupol, a landing craft of the Black Sea Fleet D-106 exploded on a mine”.
Another user called it a “special underwater operation”.
The crew is reported to have survived the incident.
There was little sympathy for the Russians on social media.
One Ukrainian sneered: “Waiting for confirmation of this suicidal gesture of goodwill.”
While another commenter wrote: “Woohoo, the Russians are going to help clear the mines in the Black Sea, they’re off to a good start.”
It is far from the only setback the Black Sea Fleet has experienced. In April its flagship, the Moscowwas sunk by Ukraine when it was hit by two R-360 Neptune missiles.
The Russian Navy consists of four fleets: Pacific Fleet, Northern Fleet, Baltic Fleet, and Black Sea Fleet.
Russia lives in fear
The embarrassment comes after another setback for Putin, with Russia announcing it would leave Ukraine’s Snake Island.
The island, located 120 kilometers off Ukraine’s southern Black Sea coast, is in an important strategic position and Russia said it has withdrawn its troops as a “goodwill gesture” to allow Kiev to export agricultural products. .
The announcement came after Ukraine launched several attacks on Russian forces on the island, and it has been celebrated as a victory for the nation.
“I thank the defenders of the Odessa region who took maximum measures to liberate a strategically important part of our territory,” Valeriy Zaluzhny, the commander-in-chief of the Ukrainian army, said on Telegram.
“Unable to withstand the fire of our artillery, missiles and air strikes, the occupiers left Snake Island.”
In the meantime, CNN has reported that there have been attacks on three pro-Russian officials in the past two weeks, pointing to a growing resistance movement in southern Ukraine, which is partially occupied by Russia.