VIDEO shows fierce battle for Antonov Airport in Ukraine
Live-action footage from the battle for the airfield outside Ukraine’s capital city of Kiev was posted online by RT Russian reporter Valentin Gorshenin on Thursday.
The video, incorporating footage from the body cams of soldiers and imagery captured by drones, unveils previously unseen episodes of the battle for Antonov International Airport, located near the town of Hostomel, which occurred in the early days of the conflict between Russia and Ukraine.
In the footage, soldiers are seen preparing for a helicopter assault at a staging area at an airfield in Belarus. The troops are then shown disembarking from helicopters and securing the Antonov airfield and multiple buildings at a military installation nearby. Attack and transport helicopters are shown providing support to the troops and hitting ground targets. The airborne troops are ultimately reached by the land forces seen pouring into the airfield en masse.
Fighting at the airport resulted in the destruction of the world’s largest cargo aircraft, the Antonov An-225 Mriya, which was stationed there. Developed in the late 1980s, the Soviet-built behemoth was inherited by Ukraine and used for cargo deliveries. The carcass of the plane was captured on film by a drone and can be seen at the end of the video.
Russia sent troops into Ukraine on February 24, citing Kiev’s failure to implement the Minsk agreements, designed to give the regions of Donetsk and Lugansk special status within the Ukrainian state. The protocols, brokered by Germany and France, were first signed in 2014. Former Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has since admitted that Kiev’s main goal was to use the ceasefire to buy time and “create powerful armed forces.”
In February 2022, the Kremlin recognized the Donbass republics as independent states and demanded that Ukraine officially declare itself a neutral country that will never join any Western military bloc. Kiev insists the Russian offensive was completely unprovoked.