World's largest airplane destroyed in Ukraine

TEHRAN, Feb. 28 (MNA) – The world's largest aircraft, the Antonov AN-225, has been destroyed during the latest developments in Ukraine, according to Ukrainian officials.

The enormous aircraft, named "Mriya," or "dream" in Ukrainian, was parked at an airfield near Kyiv when it came under attack, Ukrainian authorities said, adding that they would rebuild the plane, CNN reported.

There has been no independent confirmation of the aircraft's destruction. A tweet from the Antonov Company said it could not verify the "technical condition" of the aircraft until it had been inspected by experts.

Ukrainian state defense company Ukroboronprom, which manages Antonov, on Sunday issued a statement saying the aircraft had been destroyed but would be rebuilt at Russia's expense -- a cost it put at $3 billion.

In a later statement, the company said the airplane had been in on the ground near Kyiv on February 24 undergoing maintenance.

"According to the director of Antonov Airlines, one of the engines was dismantled for repairs and the plane wasn't able to take off that day, although the appropriate commands were given," it said.

MP/PR

News Code 184374

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