On Tuesday, Ukraine’s Defense Ministry’s Main Intelligence Directorate (GUR) reported that Russian authorities are gearing up to intentionally submerge a second ferry in the Kerch Strait, situated near the Crimean Bridge connecting Russian-occupied Crimea with the mainland. This action is purportedly being taken to safeguard the bridge from potential attacks originating from Ukraine.
The GUR said the Russians plan to sink at least six ferries and install boom barriers between them to create a protective lane of obstacles in front of the Kerch bridge.
This would create underwater obstacles which would hinder any hostile naval movements or underwater activities including those involving submarines or underwater drones. The boom barriers would be floating on the surface as a defensive structure of obstacles preventing the movement of vessels such as ships or boats.
“In this way, the enemy seeks to protect the Kerch Strait Bridge from further damage,” the GUR said in a statement.
The Ukrainian intelligence agency reported that this was the result of “several successful attacks by Ukraine’s Security and Defense” targeting the Kerch Strait Bridge which “sustained serious damage,” and “its road section and railway tracks were affected by explosions.”
“The recent strikes on the Kerch Bridge have once again worsened the situation for the enemy’s grouping of troops in the south of Ukraine and provoked a hysterical reaction from the military and political leadership of Moscow,” the GUR said.
It added: “The Kremlin demanded anything to secure the facility, which is critically important for the military logistics of the Russian army of occupation.”
In July, after the Ukrainian attacks on the Kerch bridge, Russian President Vladimir Putin said it was “yet another act of terrorism by the Kyiv regime, pointless from the military standpoint.”
Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov said at the time the danger of Ukrainian forces attacking the Crimean Bridge is still very high, thus mandating the maintenance of a heightened alert level, according to state news agency TASS.
He said: “Of course, ensuring the security of the Crimean Bridge requires the most thorough measures, verification measures, which are being carried out by our relevant bodies.”