According to Russian officials, the oil drilling rig was struck Monday morning at 8.37 p.m. local time, about 70 kilometers from the annexed Crimean peninsula.
Three oilmen were seriously injured in the blow to one of the three gas extraction platforms targeted by Ukraine at the same time, and seven more are missing.
Russian Senator Crimea Olga Kovitidi said the pipelines had been drained from the platforms to minimize the risk of fire and that production at the Odessa gas field had been halted.
Ukraine’s successful blow has once again exposed Russia’s vulnerability in the Black Sea following a series of resonant naval failures, including the crash of Moscow’s flagship, the Russian Black Sea Fleet, in April.
The attack on Monday was the first such blow to offshore energy infrastructure in Ukraine since the invasion began. The damage to production platforms has also cast doubt on the Kremlin’s ability to continue producing oil and gas in the region.
“While part [Juodosios jūros] “The coast remains in Ukraine’s hands, and the sea remains a disputed area for Russia,” said Alessio Patalano, a naval expert at the Royal College of London.
According to Sergei Bratchuk, a spokesman for the Odessa regional military administration, the platforms were a legitimate target because they were used by the Russian army.
“Russia had installed small crews and air defense, radar and intelligence equipment in those towers,” Bratčiuk said at a remote news conference on Tuesday.
Although without the Ukrainian navy, the Kiev army is using its missile arsenal – some of which are made in the West – to put pressure on the Russian navy trying to continue operations off the coast of Ukraine.
Particularly fierce fighting on Snake Island in the Danube Delta. Satellite images released on Wednesday show new demolition of buildings.
Ukraine reported this week hit a Russian-controlled island about 70 km west of damaged gas extraction platforms.
In addition to the cruiser Moscow, which sank after being rocket-attacked by Ukrainian armed forces, at least nine other Russian ships have been destroyed in the Black Sea since the start of the war, Oryx, an intelligence blog using open source analysis, reported.
Russian officials have condemned Monday’s attack.
“This is a terrorist attack,” the state news agency RIA Novosti quoted Georgi Muradov, deputy chairman of the Crimean Council of Ministers as saying.
The damaged gas production platforms belong to the Crimean-based oil and gas company Chernomorneftegaz, which has been sanctioned by the United States since 2014. The company produces a total of about a billion cubic meters of gas a year, said Igor Yushkov, an analyst at Russia’s National Energy Security Fund.
But experts say it is unlikely to have any consequences for energy supplies in the Crimea.
“Production of illegally captured Chernomorneftegaz in Crimea has been declining over the last few years [bet kokiu atveju]”Said Marija Šagina, an expert on international sanctions and energy from the Finnish Institute of International Affairs.
Three damaged offshore platforms, also known as the “Boycott Towers” after the former Ukrainian energy minister, were taken from Ukraine in 2014 following the annexation of Crimea by Moscow. They were later diverted from the Odessa shelf gas field to Crimean waters.
“Russia is once again surprised,” said Dmitry Goreburg, a Russian security researcher at the Virginia-based analytical center CNA. – [Jie] will realize that it can no longer operate in the region as before. “
It is strictly forbidden to use the information published by DELFI on other websites, in the media or elsewhere, or to distribute our material in any form without consent, and if consent has been obtained, DELFI must be cited as the source.