Following the German encirclement of Sevastopol and the 100,000 Soviet forces defending it, a final assault was launched on 6 June 1942. Prior to the start of the ground attack the Luftwaffe began a massive bombing offensive against defences in the city and any naval targets in the area. The ground attack began on 7 June, mainly focussing on an advance from the north whilst taking out the forts protecting the city. Initial progress was slow as the artillery bombardment proved largely ineffectual against the heavy fortifications. Fort Stalin to the North of the city was taken on 13 June, forcing the Soviets to fall back towards the city. A small Russian reinforcement of 2,600 men arrived by sea the same day but the Germans were far superior in numbers. The few remaining Russian officers were evacuated on 3 July and the Germans claimed what was left of the city.
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