The largest cargo plane in the world, the Ukraine-made Antonov-225 Mriya (AN-225), has reportedly been destroyed by the Russians after an assault had taken place on Hostomel (or Gostomel) Airport near Kyiv as reported by Ukroboronprom on February 27. The plane named “Mriya,” or the “dream” in Ukrainian, has been a source of Ukrainian pride, especially with aviation enthusiasts who marvel at the sheer size and engineering of the plane.

“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,” reported Ukroboronprom on their website.

The plane AN-225 was parked at Hostomel Airport for repairs on February 24 and was left vulnerable to the Russian attack when the troops were on their way to Kyiv. The engines of the said airplane were dismantled for repairs and thus could not be flown to another location. Ukraine has also expressed its intent to restore the Mriya back to its original form, and they also intend the Russians to shoulder its cost as they had destroyed it.

“Mriya will definitely be reborn. The restoration is estimated to take over 3 bln USD and over 5 years. Our task is to ensure that these costs are covered by the Russian Federation, which has caused intentional damage to Ukraine’s aviation and the air cargo sector,” said Ukroboronprom through a statement.

“Russia has destroyed our ‘Mriya,’ but the dream of Ukraine to get free from the occupier cannot be destroyed. We will fight for our land and our home until we win. And after the victory, we will definitely finish our new ‘Mriya,’ which has been waiting for this in a safe place for many years. Everything will be Ukraine!” said General Director of Ukroboronprom Yuriy Husyev.

Ukrainian Minister of Foreign Affairs Dmytro Kuleba also reacted to the aircraft being destroyed through a tweet, stating, “Russia may have destroyed our ‘Mriya.’ But they will never be able to destroy our dream of a strong, free, and democratic European state.”