Worlds largest aircraft, the Antonov-225 (An-225), has been destroyed, according to Ukrainian officials.
Antonov-225 named "Mriya" meaning "dream" in Ukrainian was parked in a hangar at Gostomel airport near Kyiv when, according to Ukrainian officials, it was attacked by Russian forces.
The plane, which took off for the first time in 1988, was originally conceived as a Buran space shuttle carrier during the Soviet Union. With the collapse of the Soviet Union, this project came to an end. Since 2000, the An-225 has been used as a cargo plane.
After the news of the bombing was confirmed by Minister of Foreign Affairs Dmytro Kuleba and Ukroboronprom (UOP), Minister Kuleba shared the photo of the plane on his social media account and said "Russia may have destroyed our 'Mriya'. But they will never be able to destroy our dream of a strong, free and democratic European state. We shall prevail!"
The Ukrainian state defense company Ukroboronprom issued the following statement on Sunday:
"Russian occupiers destroyed the flagship of Ukrainian aviation — the legendary An-225 "Mriya". This happened at the Antonov airfield in Gostomel near Kyiv, where the plane was. It will cost over 3 bln USD to restore the plane, the restoration shall be time consuming.
Ukraine will make every effort to ensure that the aggressor state pays for these works."