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During a Russian attack, the world’s largest aircraft, the An-225 Mriya, was destroyed

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During a Russian airstrike on the Antonov Airport in Hostomel, Ukraine, the world’s largest airplane, the Antonov An-225 Mriya, was destroyed.

Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba confirmed the destruction.

“This was the world’s largest aircraft, AN-225 ‘Mriya’ (‘Dream’ in Ukrainian). Russia may have destroyed our ‘Mriya’,” Kuleba said on Twitter. “But they will never be able to destroy our dream of a strong, free and democratic European state. We shall prevail!”

The An-225 was designed for the Soviet space program to transport the Buran space shuttle as well as bulky rocket components. It took to the air for the first time in 1988. It has six engines and 42 tires, allowing it to transport up to 640 tons, making it the most powerful and largest aircraft ever built.

Initially, the program intended to build two planes. Only one was finished before the Soviet Union fell apart.

The second giant’s unfinished airframe is stored in another hangar at Antonov Airport. Its present state is unknown.

Antonov Airport is owned by Antonov Airlines, a subsidiary of the Antonov aircraft manufacturing business, which used to operate the Mriya and other freighters.

The airport, which is located near Kyiv, Ukraine’s capital, was assaulted relatively early in Russia’s invasion of the country, which began on February 24, 2022. Russian paratroopers were allegedly ordered to the spot to construct a bridgehead for more Russian forces to be flown in.

The assault was originally repulsed by the Ukrainian National Guard, after which Dmitry Antonov, the captain of the An-225, stated that the Mriya was unharmed.

However, attacks on the airport continued, and the plane was apparently destroyed later that day. The Russians finally took possession of the facility on the afternoon of February 25, 2022.

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