Ukraine Recaptures Black Sea Oil And Gas Platforms From Russia

( – The Ukrainian government announced that its military has captured Black Sea oil platforms on the Crimean peninsula, reclaiming a previously Russian-controlled strategic surveillance site years after the Russians originally seized it from Ukraine.

The military raid on the oil and gas platforms, which are known as Bokyo Towers, was captured in a series of videos that circulated all over social media on Monday, September 11th. Ukraine’s Defense Intelligence Agency also released photos and videos of Ukrainian soldiers hoisting flags on the towers as a way of celebrating their victory over the Russians.

According to the Ukrainian government, military forces fought against at least one Russian fighter jet, which they managed to damage. The government also released official footage of the operation on Facebook.

Adviser to Ukraine’s Minister of Internal Affairs Anton Gerashchenko said that Russia had used the oil and gas platforms as a means of conducting surveillance on Ukraine since 2015, in the wake of the 2014 Russian invasion and annexation of Crimea. Gerashchenko said further that the retaking of the platforms is of “great value” to Kyiv.

Gerashchenko wrote on Twitter saying that Ukraine’s Defense Intelligence agency has deprived the Russian government of crucial surveillance on Ukraine, taking away a significant military advantage from Vladimir Putin. According to Ukraine, the military operation’s success is crucial for the country’s overall success in the Black Sea, more specifically its naval and air operations.

Pro-Russian sources, however, are disputing the Ukrainian claims. Pro-Russian military blogger Rybar said in a Telegram chat that the seizing of the Bokyo Towers was nothing more than a PR stunt by the Ukrainian government with no practical benefit. He further claimed that Ukrainian forces actually left the platforms due to fears that they would be destroyed by Russian air power.

The oil and gas platforms derive their name from the pro-Russian Ukrainian politician Yuriy Bokyo, who once served as the head of the Ukrainian Ministry of Energy.

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