Ukraine claims foreign ship damaged by Russian missile strike on Black Sea port

Photo: Armed Forces of Ukraine

Military officials in Ukraine have reported that a Russian missile struck a foreign-flagged commercial vessel, resulting in one death and four injuries, shortly after it entered a port in the Odesa region on the country’s Black Sea coast on Wednesday, November 8.

Officials said the Liberian-registered civilian vessel suffered damage to its superstructure after being struck while loading iron at the Port of Pivdennyi on Wednesday.

Yoruk Isik, head of maritime consultancy Bosphorus Observer, told Reuters that the damaged vessel was the 92,000DWT bulk carrier KMAX Ruler and that a Ukrainian harbour pilot was the lone fatality.

A Ukrainian military report stated that three of the injured individuals were Filipino crewmembers while the fourth was a local dockworker.

Officials added that the missile that struck the vessel was a Russian-made Kh-31P air-to-surface missile. However, it remains unclear whether the vessel was the missile’s intended target.

This and other attacks on Ukrainian port infrastructure came in the wake of Russia’s withdrawal from a UN-brokered arrangement that ensured the safe transit of ships carrying Ukrainian grain via the Black Sea.

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