In a bold move, Ukraine has reportedly executed a drone attack on an oil terminal in St Petersburg, Russia, marking what a Ukrainian military source describes as a “new phase” in the ongoing conflict. While Reuters couldn’t independently verify the statement, the significance of this development cannot be overlooked.
The attack comes nearly two years after Moscow’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February 2022, indicating a shift in Kyiv’s strategy to strike back, even at targets deep inside Russia. St Petersburg, Russia’s second city, stands approximately 850 km (528 miles) from the nearest section of the Ukrainian border.
Ukraine’s Strategic Move
The Ukrainian military source claims “confirmed hits” on the Russian oil terminal, emphasizing that this marks a “new stage of work in this region.” The attempt to strike deep into Russian territory highlights Ukraine’s determination to retaliate and signals a departure from its previous defensive stance.
Kyiv’s move underscores its efforts to develop and produce attack drones with extended range capabilities. This aligns with the goal of narrowing the gap in strike capabilities with Russia, which has consistently conducted long-range aerial bombardments on Ukraine, utilizing missiles and drones.
Since the annexation of Crimea by Russia in 2014, Kyiv has employed drones and missiles to strike targets on the Black Sea peninsula. This recent drone attack on a Russian oil terminal echoes Kyiv’s commitment to pushing back against Russian aggression beyond its own borders.