(RepublicanInformer.com)- As Ukraine sets its sights on the peninsula, Russia has likely relocated its Kilo-class submarines from its Black Sea fleet off the coast of Crimea due to concerns that it is no longer secure, according to U.K. intelligence on Tuesday.
According to a daily statement from the Ministry of Defense, Moscow “has almost probably” deployed its fleet from Sevastopol in Crimea to Novorossiysk in southern Russia.
According to the defense ministry, this is likely because of the recent change in the local security threat level due to increased Ukrainian long-range strike capacity.
The action also comes shortly after at least eight fighter jets were reportedly destroyed during the bombardment of Saki airbase, which is located about 140 miles from the Russian front lines in Crimea, and about a month after an ammunition depot in Crimea caught fire after being the apparent target of a missile attack.
However, it is still unknown what long-range strike capabilities Ukraine possesses or has employed, given that Kyiv has frequently urged its allies in the West to give it more long-range weapons, such as the U.S. Army Tactical Missile System (ATACMS), which has a range of about 185 miles.
To avoid a third global war, the U.S. has stated that it will not send ATACMS.
At least 16 High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS), which have a range of around 50 miles, have been delivered to Ukraine. This suggests that they are not the same systems used to attack Crimea earlier this year.
In addition to keeping quiet about the weapons it employed to strike these Russian targets, Kyiv delayed assuming responsibility for the attacks after the strikes.
However, a government official who spoke to The New York Times last month on anonymity said that a “device completely of Ukrainian manufacture was employed.”
Volodymyr Zelenskyy, the president of Ukraine, has declared that his country’s soldiers won’t stop fighting Russia until all of Ukraine has been freed, including Crimea, which Russia has been illegitimately occupying since 2014.
Russian President Vladimir Putin’s purpose for annexing the peninsula in 2014 was probably to ensure the basing of the Black Sea fleet in Crimea, according to the U.K. defense minister on Tuesday. “Russia’s continuing assault against Ukraine is now directly eroding base security.”
Given that Russia has claimed Crimea as its own for almost ten years and is allegedly becoming a popular tourist destination for Russians, the conflict over it will be challenging.