Ukraine conflict: Russian landing ship reportedly destroyed in Berdyansk explosion

by Kate Tringham & Manash Pratim Boruah

The Russian Black Sea Fleet's Alligator-class large landing ship Orsk . The Ukrainian Navy claims to have destroyed the ship while it was near the port of Russian-occupied Berdyanskof on 24 March, although this remains to be confirmed. (Cem Devrim Yaylali)

The Ukrainian Navy claims that it has destroyed one of Russia's large landing ships near the port city of Berdyansk in the Sea of Azov.

In a 24 March post on its official Facebook social media page, the Ukrainian Navy said it had destroyed the Black Sea Fleet's Alligator (Project 1171)-class landing ship tank (LST) Orsk (148). The post was accompanied by a video and photos of the port of Berdyansk engulfed in smoke and flames. Berdyansk has been under Russian control since 27 February.

The identity of the ship has yet to be independently verified; however, subsequent images posted on social media show what appears to be an Alligator-class LST near the fire and two Ropucha (Project 775)-class landing ships sailing away from the blaze.

The incident comes days after a propaganda video of Orsk


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Update: UK's first future subsea surveillance ship arrives in Merseyside for conversion

by Kate Tringham & Richard Scott

The UK's newly acquired future Multi-Role Ocean Surveillance ship sails into Cammell Laird shipyard, Birkenhead, Liverpool, on 19 January. (Royal Navy)

The UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) has purchased a second-hand commercial offshore patrol vessel from P&O Maritime Logistics' subsidiary Topaz Energy and Marinefor conversion into a specialist ship dedicated to protecting the country's critical subsea infrastructure.

The vessel, which is currently named MV Topaz Tangaroa, arrived at Cammell Laird shipyard in Birkenhead, Merseyside, for refitting on 19 January.

Topaz Tangaroa will be converted into the first of two plannedMulti-Role Ocean Surveillance (MROS) ships for underwater surveillance and seabed warfare, to be operated by the Royal Fleet Auxiliary (RFA). According to the MoD, the vessel will be formally handed over to control of the RFA in the coming days. Following the completion of its conversion activities, the vessel is planned to join the fleet around mid-2023.

Topaz Tangaroa, which will be renamed for the RFA service, was built by


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Irish Naval Service opts to mothball Roisin-class OPVs due to manning issues

by Kate Tringham

The Irish Naval Service has decided to place its two 1,700 tonne Róisín (PV 80)-class OPVs into operational reserve as a result of ongoing staffing shortages. (Irish Navy)

The Irish Naval Service (INS) has been forced to mothball its two Róisín (PV 80)-class offshore patrol vessels (OPVs) as a result of ongoing recruitment and retention issues.

An Irish Defence Forces (IDF) spokesperson confirmed to Janes that LÉ Róisín (P 51) was placed into operational reserve with effect from 31 January and that LÉ Niamh (P 52) would be placed into operational reserve on the completion of its mid-life upgrade (MLU) later this year.

“The decision to place LÉ Róisín and LÉ Niamh into operational reserve is aimed at stabilising operational delivery and assisting in the Naval Service regeneration, which entails the prioritisation of personnel training and development of existing INS personnel,” the spokesperson said. “LÉ Róisín and LÉ Niamh will remain in operational reserve until such time as the Naval Service has sufficiently regenerated suitably qualified and experienced personnel.”


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US Navy cannibalises more ships to make up for part shortfalls

by Michael Fabey

Aircraft carrier combat-system part shortfalls are forcing the US Navy to cannibalise parts from other Nimitz-class ships (Michael Fabey)

The US Navy (USN) is cannibalising ships more often than in previous years to make up for part shortfalls and meet operational commitments, according to a recent report by the US Government Accountability Office (GAO).

“With the exception of fiscal year (FY) 2017, the average number of cannibalisations per ship increased every year from 2015 to 2021,” the GAO said in its report Weapon System Sustainment: Navy Ship Usage Has Decreased as Challenges and Costs Have Increased, released 31 January.

“We asked navy officials what drove these increases, and they told us ship cannibalisations often occur due to supply chain shortfalls for specific parts,” the GAO reported.


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The Ukrainian Navy claims that it has destroyed one of Russia's large landing ships near the port ci...

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