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Daring plan to liberate Black Sea with naval drones to be launched by Zelensky

A top official in Ukraine has hinted that the country’s naval drones could be crucial in the mission to retake control of the Black Sea.

Mykhailo Fedorov, Ukraine’s top personnel in charge of unmanned weapon development, has laid bare exactly what the naval drones are capable of.

Fedorov, who is also the minister of digital transformation and the vice prime minister for innovation, education, science, and technology development, has announced that the ongoing conflict has positioned Ukraine as a global leader in unmanned weapon technology for both aerial and maritime applications.

Fedorov said: “A naval drone is a unique and classified Ukrainian development, Every naval drone is equipped with an autopilot system; video subsystems, including night vision; special communications protected from enemy’s electronic warfare; backup communication modules; and a warhead, as well as a ground-based autonomous control station, transportation and storage systems, and a data centre.”

Read More Ukraine officials claim Russian missile strike killed five people

He told Newsweek: “Such a naval fleet serves for conducting special operations, and for sure it has its role in the liberation of the temporarily occupied Black Sea coastal area.”

Despite its lack of traditional naval force, Ukraine has successfully challenged Russia’s hegemony in the Black Sea. Predictably, Russia’s Black Sea Fleet took control of the area as soon as the Ukrainian invasion began in February 2022.

As a result, its ships have repeatedly launched cruise missiles against Ukrainian cities and have periodically placed restrictions on Ukrainian marine traffic.

However, the Ukrainian military has successfully inflicted major damage on Moscow’s fleet, with the most notable feat being the destruction of Russia’s Black Sea Fleet’s flagship, the Moskva, in April 2022, using anti-ship missiles stationed on the coast.

Furthermore, Ukrainian forces essentially rendered Snake Island, a strategically important but small outpost near the Romanian shore, unsustainable for the Russian troops that took possession of it at the start of the invasion.

As a result, Russian forces abandoned the island in June 2022.

On Monday evening, two missile strikes originating from Russia struck the city centre of Pokrovsk in the eastern Donetsk region of Ukraine, resulting in the death of at least five individuals and causing injuries to around two dozen others, according to Ukrainian authorities.

These strikes, directed at the Ukrainian sector of a region that is partially under Russian occupation, happened with a mere 40 minutes between them, as reported by Donetsk Governor Pavlo Kyrylenko.

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The attack inflicted damage on residential buildings of various heights, including nine- and five-story structures, a hotel that was previously used by foreign journalists, eateries, shops, and administrative edifices.

Ukraine’s Interior Minister, Ihor Klymenko, noted that among those impacted by the strikes, five individuals lost their lives, including a local official from Ukraine’s State Emergency Service. Additionally, 31 individuals sustained injuries, comprising 19 policemen, five rescuers, and one child.

However, the Suspilne news site provided a differing account, citing Serhiy Dobriak, the head of the Pokrovsk City Military Administration, who stated that seven individuals were killed and 27 were injured. These conflicting reports have yet to be resolved.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky released an online statement accusing Russia of attempting to turn eastern Ukraine into a landscape of “broken and scorched stones.” His statement was accompanied by visual evidence depicting a damaged five-story residential building, where one floor had been partially destroyed.

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