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Russian 'Dnipro flotilla' ships to become targets for drones - UK intelligence

Russian 'Dnipro flotilla' ships to become targets for drones - UK intelligence Shoigu decided to drown the Russian fleet in the Dnipro River (Getty Images)
Author: Maria Kholina

Ships of the new Russian 'Dnipro flotilla' may find themselves vulnerable to Ukrainian drones, which have proven effective in neutralizing vessels of the Black Sea Fleet, citing the Ministry of Defence of Great Britain.

According to the briefing, on March 20, Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu announced the formation of the Dnipro River Flotilla and a boat brigade. This new formation is likely to be responsible for securing the waterways of the Dnipro River and the islands dividing Kherson, controlled by both Russia and Ukraine.

"It is a realistic possibility the Dnipro Flotilla will be subordinate to the Dnipro Group of Forces, which combined the Zaporizhzhia and Dnipro Group of Forces in February 2024," the statement reads.

British intelligence suggests that Russia likely seeks to prevent and disrupt Ukrainian operations across the river, such as the operation to establish and support a foothold in Krynky. Russian and Ukrainian forces suffered significant personnel and equipment losses during attacks on Krynky. Specifically, on March 17, 2024, Ukrainian forces in Krynky reported repelling an attack by Russia's 810th Guards Marine Brigade.

It's probable that this formation will take on river patrol functions from the Black Sea Fleet, while the Black Sea Fleet continues to operate in the eastern part of the Black Sea, the statement emphasizes.

"The Dnipro Flotilla will likely be vulnerable to Ukrainian uncrewed surface vehicles which have been effective in destroying Russian vessels operating in the Black Sea," the British Ministry of Defense writes.

Putin's plans

On March 20, Shoigu said that at the order of Vladimir Putin, Russia will form new units: the Dnipro River flotilla, an army corps, a motorized rifle division, and a brigade of river boats.

However, according to British intelligence, Moscow's plans to establish two new armies this year will face shortages of new equipment and infrastructure problems.