The Ukrainian Navy has lost the bulk of its ships, aircraft and headquarters following Russian annexation of the Crimean peninsula, where the majority of its assets were based. Russian forces moved into the region in mid-March, seizing a dozen warships moored at Sevastopol. The enforced takeover met little resistance, allowing Russia to take control of the Grisha V class frigates Ternopil and Lutsk, the patrol craft Khmelnitsky, and command ship Slavutych. All will be absorbed into Russia’s Black Sea Fleet. The seized, Foxtrot class submarine, Zaporizhya, may be returned as obsolete.

Earlier, on 3 March, the decommissioned Kara class cruiser Ochakov was sunk as a blockship in the main shipping channel to Donuzlav Lake, denying access to the Black Sea for seven Ukrainian warships at the Novoozerne naval base in western Crimea.

The Ukrainian flagship, Hetman Sagaidachny, remains at liberty, as the Krivak III class frigate was returning from NATO-run counter-piracy operations in the Indian Ocean as the crisis broke and was able to divert to Odessa.


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