Satellite image of the Crimean Peninsula. NASA Image
Ukrainian forces landed on Crimean shores Thursday, according to local press reports.
The forces, assisted by the Ukrainian Navy, planted a flag in Crimea before engaging in combat, the Kyiv Independent reported. Ukrainian forces landed near the village of Maiak, on the Crimean coast.
Ukrainian Defense Intelligence told CNN that Ukrainian and Russian forces clashed, resulting in casualties for the Russians.
CNN also reported that the attack featured on Russian social media, where Telegram channels talked about a firing near Cape Tarkhankut. One channel included that 10 men on two rubber boats were near the beach.
Ukrainian Defense Intelligence released a video of Ukrainian inflatables off the Crimean coast, according to CNN.
The raid on Crimea comes in the midst of increased Ukrainian strikes on the land, which Russia claims it annexed in 2014, although the land is still seen as Ukrainian in international eyes. Strikes targeted bridges in Crimea, including the one linking it to mainland Russia, CNN reported.
Meanwhile, news reports emerged this week of a new breed of underwater explosive drone that will expand the Ukrainian asymmetric naval capability.
“According to Ukrainian media, the Marichka is a self-developed system made by volunteer engineers (so called AMMO UKRAINE) with donations. The media platforms claim that the estimated cost of the UUV is about UAH 16 million, which is equivalent to $433,000,” reads Wednesday a report in Naval News.
“After gaining initial operational capability, Marichka is expected to be used in suicide operations against the Russian Black Sea Fleet assets, as well as critical Russian infrastructures and establishments.”
Ukrainian naval forces have relied on an ever-evolving stable of lethal drones that have attacked Russian warships and other assets in the Black Sea.