Two days before the Nord Stream sabotage, Putin’s 82-meter ship left its Baltic port. Destination: unknown.

Twilight of the gods for dictators: The superyacht “Graceful” is on the move again. The 82-meter ship attributed to Vladimir Putin was sighted in the northern Baltic Sea.

Disturbing: The Russian President’s luxury ship is escorting a heavily armed Russian Coast Guard ship. The course: heading north.

The “Graceful” set out from the refit in Hamburg right before the start of the Ukraine war with an initially unknown destination. A little later – when the superyachts of Russian oligarchs were already being chained – the “Graceful” appeared in the enclave of Kaliningrad.

Photographer Carl Groll spotted the two ships in the morning hours of September 25 in the Baltic Sea west of the Estonian island of Saaremaa. The island is halfway between Kaliningrad and Saint Petersburg at the eastern end of the Baltic Sea. Stockholm and Helsinki, the capitals of future NATO partners Sweden and Finland, are only around 200 kilometers away from the sighting.

In May 2021, Putin received the Belarusian ruler Lukashenko on the Graceful in the Black Sea. Blohm Voss has been overtaking the ship in Hamburg since September 2021. Among other things, two balconies are said to have been installed, the submarine cleaned and the engines overhauled. In Hamburg, the superyacht lay nose to nose with a German corvette that was only seven meters longer and was under construction.

Yacht photo broker Peter Seyfferth explains to float that both ships were heading north with the AIS switched off. The convoy was led by the 82-meter, freshly refitted Putin superyacht, followed by a gunboat.

Since the AIS was switched off, it is unclear where the convoy was headed. It is very likely that he drove to the nearest Russian port city he could reach: to Saint Petersburg, Putin’s hometown.

Up to twelve guests can be accommodated on board in six cabins. There are also 14 crew members. There is a helipad on the upper deck. Blohm Voss specifies the range of the five-decker as 6,000 nautical miles. This takes you further than the end of the Baltic Sea.

The sighting of the convoy came less than two days before the sabotage of the Nord Stream pipelines, which the Nord Stream Race was promoting just before the start of the war.

How similar the pictures are: Shortly before the start of the Russian invasion in February, the ship surprisingly left Germany and sailed unmolested through the Kiel Canal in the direction of the Baltic States. Is the Russian exclave of Kaliningrad no longer considered a safe haven?

There is one more piquant detail: the new photos show for the first time that the “Graceful” (in German “graceful”) has been renamed. The new name of the superyacht is “Kocatka”. In German it means “killer whale”.

The original of this post “Putin’s superyacht is suddenly moving again in the Baltic Sea” comes from floatmagazin.