Ukraine deploys Neptune missiles as tactical weapons for first time — expert

Aftermath of attack on terminals in Russia's Krasnodar Territory
Aftermath of attack on terminals in Russia's Krasnodar Territory

Ukraine used Neptune missiles as tactical weapons rather than anti-ship missiles for the first time, former Deputy Chief-of-Staff of the Ukrainian Navy and strategic expert with Sonata Company, Andriy Ryzhenko, said in an interview with NV Radio on May 30.

The Ukrainian Navy targeted a ferry crossing and an oil terminal at Port Kavkaz in Russia's Krasnodar Krai with missiles launched from a Neptune coastal missile system, Ukraine's General Staff said.

"This might be the first such strike, and we see Neptune being used exclusively against coastal targets as a tactical strike missile rather than an anti-ship missile for the first time," Ryzhenko said.

The missile launches likely originated not from Odesa Oblast but from a closer location, he said.

When asked if this could be considered the first mass strike of Neptune missiles on ground targets, Ryzhenko confirmed.

Attack on Russia's Port Kavkaz

The Russian state news agency RIA Novosti, citing local authorities, reported that overnight on May 31 an oil depot in the Temryuk district of Krasnodar Krai caught fire following a massive drone attack.

Initially, the Russians claimed that three tanks containing oil products caught fire during the strike. Governor Veniamin Kondratyev stated that there were casualties among the oil depot workers.

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The Telegram channel Krymsky Veter later reported that the fire started at Port Kavkaz. This oil depot supplies fuel to Russian forces in the seized Crimea, Kherson, and Zaporizhzhya oblasts.

The Ukrainian Armed Forces (AFU), working alongside SBU Security Service, conducted a multi-day operation aimed at disrupting the logistics supplying Russian troops in Crimea.

Following the operation's success, a massive fire erupted, visible even from satellite imagery.

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