Moskva, the flagship of Russia’s Black Sea Fleet, was being towed to port when “stormy seas” caused it to sink, according to a Russian Ministry of Defense statement on Friday April 15, 2022.
However, Ukraine claims that the warship was hit by two anti-air Neptune surface-to-sea missiles (range 300 km), about 25 nautical miles from Snake Island.
The 510-crew missile cruiser was a symbol of Russia’s military power, leading its naval assault on Ukraine. The 12,490-tonne vessel is the biggest Russian warship to be sunk in action since World War Two.
Ukrainian military officials said they struck the Moskva with Ukrainian-made Neptune missiles – a weapon designed after Russia’s annexation of Crimea in 2014, and the naval threat to Ukraine in the Black Sea grew.
The ship’s sinking was described by the US as a “big blow”, but American officials were unable to confirm whether Ukrainian Neptune missiles were responsible.