Ukrainian command ship Donbas

Donbas (Ukrainian: Донбас) was a Project 304 (NATO reporting name: Amur) former Soviet repair ship that was converted to a command ship of the Ukrainian Navy. She was built on Szczecin Shipyard in Poland in 1969 for the Soviet Navy and entitled PM-9. "PM" is a Russian abbreviation for a repair ship (Russian: Плавучая мастерская, Plavuchaya masterskaya), and literally means a floating repair shop. Donbas was destroyed during the Siege of Mariupol as a part of the 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Donbas U500 2012 G1.jpg
Donbas at Sevastopol Bay in July 2012
Soviet Union
NameKrasnodon (formerly PM-9)
Commissioned11 November 1969
DecommissionedTransferred to the Ukrainian Navy in the 1990s
NameDonbas (formerly Krasnodon)
StatusSunk in April 2022 during the Siege of Mariupol
Badge(U500) Donbas.png
General characteristics
Class and typeAmur-class repair ship
Displacement5,520 tons
Length122 m (400 ft 3 in)
Beam17 m (55 ft 9 in)
Draft4.63 m (15 ft 2 in)
Speed12 knots (22 km/h; 14 mph)

Service historyEdit

Donbas supervises a joint parade of the Ukrainian Navy and the Black Sea Fleet on Navy Day in 2012

The ships of this company were considered the most durable, they were actively applied in military campaigns since the early 1970s.

As a result of the distribution of the Black Sea Fleet, PM-9 changed her name to Krasnodon. In 2001, she was renamed the Donbas. During her service in the Ukrainian Navy, the ship has repeatedly participated in international exercises, as well as in local military parades and cruises. On 11 November 2007, the ship was caught in a hurricane near Sevastopol, but suffered minor injuries and remained intact due to the assistance of the Russian tug MB-160.[1][2]

The ship Donbas marked her fourth decade of naval service on 4 December 2009. On this occasion, the Ministry of Defence of Ukraine allocated on 6 December 2010 around 4 million UAH for the ship reconstruction. On 25 January 2011, she successfully passed the first stage of sea trials.

On 20 March 2014, the ship was captured by the Russian Navy during the Crimean crisis.[3] On 17 April 2014, she was transported from Sevastopol to Odessa by the Ukrainian tug Hennadiy Savelyev.[4] On 27 September 2014, with the War in Donbas at its height, Donbas shot down a pro-Russian drone while sailing off Mariupol.[5] On 4 September 2016, the ship was damaged by fire at Odessa.[6]

The search and rescue vessel Donbas and the sea tug Korets [uk] got underway from Odessa on 20 September 2018 and transited the Kerch Strait on 23 September, escorted by a number of Russian Navy units. Ukrainian Navy Gyurza-M-class gunboats Kremenchuk [uk] and Lubny [uk] got underway from the port of Berdyansk to meet the two vessels as they entered the Sea of Azov. Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko congratulated the crews of the two ships on a successful transit on his Facebook page, adding that they would become part of a newly created base in the Sea of Azov.[7]

"The rescue ship Donbas and the tugboat Korets have arrived in Mariupol. Two small armored gunboats, the Kremenchuk and the Lubny [which were previously redeployed to the Azov Sea and set out to meet the other two ships on 23 September] arrived together with them," as stated at the Ukrainian Military Portal.[8]

Satellite images published on 6 April 2022 show the Donbas being engulfed in heavy smoke in the port of Mariupol, indicating the ship was likely hit.[9] On 16 April 2022, Ukrainian Defence Ministry confirmed the ship was destroyed during the Siege of Mariupol.[10][11]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "Navy cut in the living: the Black Sea as a shared legacy of the Soviet Union". 25 July 2012. Retrieved 12 April 2019.
  2. ^ "В Севастополе во время шторма пострадали боевые корабли России и Украины (ФОТО)" (in Russian). Novy Den. 13 November 2007. Retrieved 12 April 2019.
  3. ^ "У Криму три кораблі України підняли Андріївський прапор Росії". Ukrayinska Pravda (in Ukrainian). 20 March 2014. Retrieved 2 June 2016.
  4. ^ "Звільнений корабель "Донбас" прямує до Одеси" (in Ukrainian). Espreso TV. 17 April 2014. Retrieved 12 April 2019.
  5. ^ "Прикордонників у Херсонській області атакували із Криму - РНБО". 28 August 2014. Archived from the original on 29 August 2014. Retrieved 12 April 2015.
  6. ^ Voytenko, Mikhail (4 September 2016). "Ukrainian Navy auxiliary ship DONBASS fire, Odessa". Retrieved 20 December 2017.
  7. ^ "Ukraine establishing Sea of Azov base as first navy ships enter through Kerch Strait". 24 September 2018. Retrieved 12 April 2019.
  8. ^ "Two Ukrainian ships that entered Azov Sea arrive in Mariupol". Interfax-Ukraine. 25 September 2018. Retrieved 12 April 2019 – via Kyiv Post.
  9. ^ "ВМС Украины потеряли очередной корабль". 6 April 2022.
  10. ^ "ВМС України втратили у Маріуполі корабель управління "Донбас" та МБАК "Кременчук"" [Ukrainian Navy loses Donbas control ship and Kremenchuk MBAK in Mariupol]. Ukrainian Defence Ministry (in Ukrainian). 16 April 2022.
  11. ^ "Военная спецоперация на Украине. День пятьдесят второй: онлайн-трансляция". 16 April 2022.