Russian missile cruiser ‘Moskva’ has suffered serious damage and the crew has been evacuated after explosions on the vessel, ammunition has detonated, reportedly due to a Ukrainian attack on the warship.
On the 13th of April 2022, Ukrainian presidential adviser Oleksiy Arestovych and Odesa governor Maksym Marchenko said that Moskva had been hit by two Neptune anti-ship missiles and was on fire in rough seas. Arestovych said there were 510 crew members aboard.
The Russian Defense Ministry however said that a fire had caused munitions to explode, the ship had been seriously damaged and the crew fully evacuated, without any reference to a Ukrainian strike.
OSINT analysts reported that distress signals had been transmitted from the Moskva, and that multiple assistance vessels had appeared near the last known location of the ship.
The ‘Snake Island Warship’
In February 2022, the cruiser left Sevastopol for the Black Sea as part of the 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine.
The ship was later used against the Ukrainian armed forces during the attack on Snake Island together with the Russian patrol boat Vasily Bykov. Moskva hailed the island’s garrison over the radio and demanded its surrender, and was told “Russian warship, go fuck yourself“. After this, all contact was lost with Snake Island, and the thirteen-member Ukrainian garrison was captured. The exchange has been translated as:
Russian warship: “Snake Island, I, Russian warship, repeat the offer: put down your arms and surrender, or you will be bombed. Have you understood me? Do you copy?”
Ukrainian 1: “That’s it, then. Or, do we need to fuck them back off?”
Ukrainian 2: “Might as well.”
Ukrainian 1: “Russian warship, go fuck yourself.”