Putin’s $120 million spy ship taken out by massive missile strike

The massive Ivan Khurs could be taken out of action if heavily damaged (Picture: East2West)

Another Russian spy warship has been damaged in a missile strike by Ukraine – meaning Vladimir Putin has lost more than a quarter of his naval fleet in the war.

‌The 312-foot-long Ivan Khurs reconnaissance ship was ‘hit by two missiles at once’ in the annexed naval port Sevastopol and heavily damaged, according to Russian media outlet ASTRA.

It comes after two earlier strikes on two large landing ships in Vladimir Putin’s Black Sea Fleet – the Yamal and Azov, each worth an eyewatering $200 million.

‌Ukraine fired 18 missiles – believed to be a combination of Anglo-French Storm Shadow and SCALPs – at Sevastopol in the biggest onslaught yet on the annexed city.

Satellite images showing the results of missile attacks on Russian large landing ships in occupied Sevastopol.

‌Eleven of the missiles were shot down by Russian air defences, but seven hit targets which reportedly included the fleet’s main communications centre.

‌Ukraine’s Armed Forces strategic communications said on Sunday that both the Yamal and Azov warships had been hit, but neglected to mention the longtime target Ivan Khurs.

‌The scale of damage to the $120 million Ivan Khurs – which has a normal crew of 131 – is not yet clear.

‌But the Yamal suffered ‘critical’ damage, according to Ukrainian military intelligence GUR.

They said: ‘‌The occupiers are continuously pumping water from the damaged ship, which took part in the annexation of Crimea and was under repair from 2017 to 2023.’

‌Other damage to the vessels is being investigated, but ‌the Ivan Khurs is a Yuriy Ivanov class (Project 18280) signals intelligence vessel which came into service in 2017 – and Ukraine has already come close to sinking it twice.

In one instance, Ukraine struck the key vessel with kamikaze sea drone attacks, with reports it had been damaged.

‌If this latest strike is confirmed, the losses will be a blow to the Kremlin.

‌It comes days after Admiral Alexander Moiseev, 61, was made commander-in-chief of the Russian navy after Putin fired previous incumbent Admiral Nikolay Yevmenov over a previous battleship sinking by Ukraine.

The $70 million Sergey Kotov patrol vessel, one of Putin’s newest naval ships, was sunk by a flock of unmanned Ukrainian MAGURA V5 attack drones.

The $200 million Caesar Kunikov large landing ship was also destroyed by Ukrainian forces last year, meaning Russia has lost more than a quarter of its fleet in the war.

If the latest three vessels are confirmed to be out of commission, Putin will have lost 18 warships since the beginning of the 25-month war with Ukraine, and seven since the end of December last year.

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