Ukraine destroyed 15 S-400 and S-300 air defense systems in Crimea since April 2024

Ukraine has hit 15 Russian air defense systems in Crimea since April, according to the defense ministry in Kyiv, which has released a map showing the spread of the strikes across the occupied territory.

Retaking the peninsula illegally annexed by Vladimir Putin in 2014 remains a war goal for Kyiv, and over the last two years, Ukrainian forces have succeeded in striking Russian military targets, including at the Black Sea Fleet base of Sevastopol.

In a Telegram post on Monday, the Ukrainian Defense Ministry outlined its latest attacks in the region, saying that “15 Russian air defense systems have been hit in two months.”

These included S-300, S-350 and S-400 surface-to-air missile systems. “Dozens of launchers of these systems, more than 15 radar stations, more than ten command posts were also destroyed,” the post said next to a map.

This graphic marked the locations of the strikes, which ranged from Sevastopol in the south to Dzankoi in the north. The furthest west was at Tarkhankut while the most eastern strike took place in Mysove.

The map also shows attacks on other Crimean settlements Chornomorske, Yevpatoria, Saky, Donske, Belbek, Alushta and near Ai-Petri peak.

Last week, the Astra Telegram channel reported how Kyiv’s forces launched 12 ATACMS (Army Tactical Missile System) missiles across Crimea and “completely destroyed” two S-400 air defense systems and a radar station at the Balbek air base near Sevastopol.

Also last week, the Institute for the Study of War (ISW) said Kyiv may be targeting Russia’s air defenses before U.S-built F-16 fighter jets arrive so it can “more effectively” use the Lockheed Martin-made jets.

Ukraine’s Military Intelligence Chief Kyrylo Budanov said last week that Russian air defense losses had prompted Moscow to move to the peninsula its latest S-500 systems which are designed to intercept short- to medium-range threats and defend against ballistic, cruise, and hypersonic missiles.

It comes as Ukraine unveiled its newest naval drone the Stalker 5.0 at the Black Sea Security Forum 2024 in the city of Odesa, the Kyiv Independent reported, citing local media.

Around 15 feet long and four feet wide, the Stalker 5.0 has a video and control system based on Starlink and can reach speeds of nearly 50 miles per hour, with a cruising speed of around 30 miles an hour.

Domestically-produced naval drones, such as Magura V5 and Sea Baby are among the weapons Ukraine has used to strike Russian ships, as well as the Kerch Bridge in Crimea.

Ukraine’s military intelligence said that the Magura V5 naval drone can now be equipped with an anti-aircraft platform as well as the R-73 air-to-air guided missiles which are mainly used by aircraft like MiG-29 or Su-34.

One of the Magura drones has already been equipped with these missiles, an unnamed commander of the military intelligence Group 13 unit told journalist Maksym Krapivnoy, according to the Kyiv Independent.

“The Russians are very afraid of them,” the commander said, the publication reported. Newsweek has contacted the Russian defense ministry for comment.

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